Child sexual and physical abuse investigations are extremely important. That single sen-tence seems obvious; however, many persons involved in the investigation of allegations of child abuse fail to see the long-term impact the investigation can have on a victim, a suspect, witnesses, family members, and child abuse investigations professionals.
Child protection professionals (child protective services, law en-forcement, victim advocates, forensic interviewers, and legal profes-sionals etc.,) are called upon to conduct investigations of child abuse, whether an allegation of neglect, physical or sexual abuse or a death. The emotional nature of these investigations oftentimes results in a less than thorough investigation; the goal of the course is to ensure the best possible investigation and outcome of the allegation.
In this course, students will learn best practices for child abuse investigations, from the moment the complaint is received (dispatch) until the matter is decided in a court room (disposition).
This course covers aspects of the initial response, crime scene ex-amination and collection of forensic evidence. Victim interview tech-niques to elicit the maximum information are discussed. The psy-chological make up of child sex offenders and the outward behavior of perpetrators is discussed along with best practices for suspect interviews. The student will learn how to corroborate or refute the abuse allegations. The student will learn to interact and interview non-offending parents and family members. The student will learn how to present the investigation to the prosecution.
- Historical and current definitions of child abuse.
- Developing an investigative strategy.
- Psychology of the victim (Victimology).
- Victim interviews.
- Psychology of the suspect.
- Suspect interviews.
- Child abuse crime scene investigation.
- Corroborating allegations of abuse.
- Interview techniques witnesses and family members.
- Defenses to abuse.