False Accusations of Child Sexual Abuse: What Should You Do?

Public awareness about the sexual abuse of children has gained more and more attention in recent years. Although we should take the necessary steps to ensure that children are protected from sexual abuse, not all reports of abuse have merit. In some situations, false allegations are intentionally made to discredit or harm the person being accused. This tends to happen during a contentious divorce or difficult child custody battle. Because of this, it is important to take immediate counter-actions if you have been accused of sexually abusing a child. In this blog, we explain how to handle false sexual abuse allegations.

What To Do

  • Try to limit false accusations by avoiding children when no other adult is present. Day care workers, scout leaders, and coaches are often the target of false accusations because they are frequently around children by themselves. Having another credible adult around who can corroborate that nothing inappropriate happened can help you overcome false abuse allegations.
  • Avoid behavior that could be considered inappropriate whenever you are around children. Sexually suggestive comments, dirty jokes, rough-housing, or overly aggressive horseplay should all be avoided when you are around children.
  • Become familiar with common false allegations of child abuse. This will help you have a better understanding of the accusation so that you can prepare to protect yourself.
  • If the allegations against you come up during a custody dispute, attempt to maintain a positive relationship with your children despite the allegations against you. Remember that false accusations can be planted in your child's mind through no fault of their own.
  • You will need an attorney to help you fight back against the false allegations you are facing. You should immediately consult with an experienced attorney if you have been accused of sexual abuse.

What Not To Do

  • Don’t put yourself in precarious situations with children. If your job or role requires you to accompany children to the bathroom or help them to change clothes, make sure another adult is present when you are doing these things.
  • Do not be passive if you are facing child abuse accusations. Be proactive and take necessary actions to protect yourself.
  • Never admit to anything, even if it seems easier to do so.
  • Don’t give up. Child abuse has severe implications that can negatively impact your future employment opportunities and future relationships.

Have you been falsely accused of sexually abusing a child? Contact our Rhode Island criminal defense attorneys to set up your free case consultation today.

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