Articles Posted in Sexual Abuse

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An investigation by Federal agents has identified 123 victims of internet child pornography perpetrated by an international operation spanning 19 U.S. states and several foreign countries. As a result of the investigation nearly 250 people were arrested.

This operation, nicknamed Sunflower, was named after Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s first successful case under its Victim Identification Program.

While law enforcement can hold perpetrators of these horrific acts criminally liable, victims are still left emotionally and psychologically scarred. The difficulty of coping with the effects of abuse leaves some victims reluctant to identify their abusers or to come forward with their stories. It is important for survivors of childhood sexual abuse to know they have rights, and enforcing those rights can be an integral part in the healing process.

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In June, sexual abuse allegations surfaced against Rev. Gary Miller, a priest from St. Bernadette’s Parish in the southern Chicago suburb of Evergreen Park. The allegations relate back to when Miller served at St. Leonard Parish in Berwyn. Following the allegations, Miller was removed from ministry and left his position at St. Bernatette’s. Currently, no further allegations against Miller have been reported.

In Illinois, the statute of limitations, or period of time in which a legal action may be brought, for sexual abuse, the “Childhood Sexual Abuse Act”, 735 ILCS 5/13-202.2, was initially enacted in 1991and it was amended in 1993, 2003, 2010, and 2011. Under the Act, victims may be able to seek recovery for the injuries they suffered as a result of being abused, sometimes years after the abuse actually took place.

Sexual abuse victims are often reluctant to come forward. And, in some cases, the psychological damage caused by their attackers leave some victims unable to recall the abuse until later in life. In an effort to confront these difficulties, attorney Joseph Klest helped draft an amendment toe Childhood Sexual Abuse Act in Illinois to extend that period of time in which victims can potentially bring a claim. The Klest Injury law firm provides free consultation to victims of childhood sexual abuse. To speak with an experienced victim’s rights attorney from the Klest Injury Law Firm, click here, or dial 866-264-7639.

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Southern Baptist Pastor, Douglas W. Myers, pleaded guilty in a Lake County Florida court to molesting a 13-year-old boy whose grandmother he had befriended. The abuse reportedly began in July 2005 and continued for six months. During that time, Myers would also drive the boy to school.

Myers was considered a trusted church leader by some and worked as a pastor in several states, including Alabama and Maryland. He will serve seven years behind bars and will continue to be monitored even after he is released.

Attorney Joseph Klest has over 30 years experience advocating on behalf of sexual abuse victims. Attorney Klest also helped draft the extended Illinois statute of limitations for sexual abuse cases. If you would like to speak with an attorney regarding sexual abuse victims’ rights, click here, or dial 866-264-7639.

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Catholic Monsignor William J. Lynn of Philadelphia, who handled child sexual abuse complaints for over 10 years while serving as the secretary for clergy at the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, was found guilty of one count of endangerment based on allegations that he encouraged reassignment for priests suspected of abusing children. This marks the first time a leader of the Catholic Church has been convicted for a crime in connection with the church sex abuse scandal.

Of note, Lynn has never been accused of abusing any children himself. The allegations against him only stem from actions he took as a leader in the Church hierarchy after learning of accusations against other Catholic Priests.

The Klest Injury Law Firm has over 30 years experience advocating on behalf of sexual abuse victims. Chicago attorney Joseph G. Klest helped draft the extended statute of limitations for sexual abuse cases in Illinois. If you would like to speak with an attorney regarding sexual abuse victims’ rights, please click here, or dial 866-264-7639.

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Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed a new law that went into effect Wednesday requiring coaches and university employees to report child sexual abuse. The law is aimed at preventing cases similar to the one involving former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky who was convicted last week of sexually assaulting 10 underage boys.

The addition of coaches and university employees adds to the list of people in Illinois already required to report abuse, including social workers, teachers, healthcare professionals, police, clergy, child care providers, foster parents, funeral home directors and commercial film processors.

Some of the mandatory reporting provisions in Illinois include criminal liability in certain instances where a person required to report abuse willfully fails to do so. The law is meant to prevent child sexual abuse from going unreported.

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A Will County man who was found guilty of two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse is currently under house arrest as he awaits his sentencing hearing scheduled for July 20. According to the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office, the convicted sex offender could face up to 14 years in prison for abusing a 10-year-old girl numerous times over the course of a year.

Victims of sexual abuse are often reluctant to come forward to report their abusers. Attorney Joseph G. Klest understands the stigma that comes with sexual exploitation and offers compassionate legal counsel in a confidential setting. Click here, or dial 866-264-7639 to contact Joseph G. Klest for a confidential and free consultation.

© Joseph G. Klest, 2012

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Another devastating sex abuse scandal has erupted in college sports. This time Syracuse University assistant basketball coach, Bernie Fine, was fired amid allegations that he molested underage boys. This marks the third high profile college sex abuse scandal in 2011. The other two cases, which occurred at Penn State and The Citadel, involved failures by school officials to report the alleged abuse to police.

Employers, such as Universities, may be held liable for sexual abuse committed by their employees. In those types of cases it is important to determine whether the employer knew or reasonable should have known of similar allegations of sexual abuse by its employee or of potential danger, but continued to employ that person or allow him or her access to children.

To speak with an experienced sex abuse lawyer from the Klest Injury Law Firm, click here, or dial 866-264-7639, for a free consultation.

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New criminal charges have been announced in connection with the Penn State sex abuse scandal. Two top administrators from the university, Athletic Director Tim Curley and senior vice president for business and finance, Gary Schultz, are facing perjury charges for failing to report suspected child sex abuse by Penn State’s former defense coordinator Jerry Sandusky.

Sandusky was arrested Saturday on charges of sex abuse. It is reported that the former football coach targeted boys he met through a charity he founded for at-risk youths called The Second Mile. The charity announced on Sunday that Sandusky ceased having any involvement with children through the charity since 2008 when he informed the organization that he was under investigation for sexually abusing young boys.

The Klest Injury Law Firm represents victims of sexual abuse in Illinois and throughout the country. The firm recently announced a milestone victory by receiving a $28,000,000 verdict in a sexual abuse case. This verdict represents the largest civil sexual abuse verdict in Illinois history and is among the largest in the nation. To speak to an experienced sexual abuse attorney from the Klest Injury Law Firm, click here, or call 866-264-7639.

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According to the Chicago Police Department, Domestic Violence Newsletter, more than 70% of sexual assaults are committed by someone the victim knows. Between March 2010 and March 2011, in the City of Chicago alone, 1,349 incidents or criminal sexual assault were reported. (Statistics on sexual abuse are reported by the office of the Illinois Attorney General.)

These statistics are alarming, but there are things you can do to stop or prevent abuse. When it comes to children, never let your guard down. If you notice unexplained bruises or marks on your child, you should investigate immediately. Ask questions and listen to what your child has to say. The only way a sexual predator doesn’t get caught is if everyone remains silent.

The Klest Injury Law Firm has represented victims of sexual abuse in Illinois and throughout the country. The firm recently announced a milestone victory by receiving a $28,000,000 verdict for a sexual abuse victim. This verdict represents the largest civil sexual abuse verdict in Illinois history and is among the largest in the nation. To speak to an experienced sexual abuse attorney from the Klest Injury Law Firm, click here, or call 866-264-7639.

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The FBI arrested Christopher Kice, 41, of the 1100 block of Callaway Drive West in Shorewood this week for possession of child pornography. FBI officials stated they suspect Kice may have produced some of the images inside his home in suburban Chicago. He is charged with felony possession of child pornography.

FBI officials are asking anyone who may have information regarding this case to call 312-421-6700.

Along with criminal prosecution, Federal Law also provides a civil remedy to victims of child pornography. Under 18 U.S.C., Section 2252A(f), victims of child pornography have the right to commence a civil action to seek to recover injunctive relief and damages.