Saturday, August 29, 2009

Innocence Torn Away: In Search of a Child Molester after 30 Years

Dear Friends...

As I looked at the news and saw a 29 year old Jaycee Lee Dugard rescued I could not help but share her pain. 1991, Jaycee was kidnapped at 11 years old and held captive until 29 years old. She was repetitively raped and had two children by her captor. Her family was devastated and I can only imagine what poor Jaycee was going through being pulled from everything she knew. While her story shocks me and has brought me to tears since her story aired, Jaycee's story has inspired me with vigor and determination to save children and to deal with my own situation.

When I was six years old, I was violently raped and molested by my mom's friend and neighbor. We lived in a complex named Dodge View in Landover, Maryland. I felt hopeless all of these years, but today, I feel that he should be found and stopped from ever doing this again.

Today starts my search for this man who ripped through my soul and innocence at six. I was damaged for life. "Jose" was a good friend of my mom's and befriended me. He offered to fix my bicycle and instead of first fixing my bike, he pulled down my clothes, rubbed lotion all over my body and raped me at six. I never told my mother before she died. When she died I was ten. So, whatever hope of finding him and bringing him to justice was out of the question at that time. This hopelessness has stuck with me for an eternity, until today.

I am going to work to locate him and work to make sure that he can not harm another child. I can only imagine how many other children feel prey to his coercion and manipulation in order to rip their souls away.

Where do I start? Well, I am going to start with the Prince George's County Police Department. I have contacted the Deputy Chief of Police for another reason, but I am going to add this conversation in the mix. Next, I am going to search for information on the apartment complex back then, ask for their records and try to locate this man. I have so many things to say to him.

Whether he is prosecuted or convicted, my only solace comes in him knowing how he damaged me and how he took my innocence from me and to know I just might be able to save another child.

I remember that day like it was yesterday. I bled and bled that day. My dad never knew, my mom never knew and my brothers and sister never knew. I revealed this at 14. By that time, as I mentioned, mom was dead. So, I was devastated during my teenage years having to deal with this nearly alone.

If you are out there and you feel like I do; stand up for yourself. Let's put people like this where they belong. There are many children who do not speak up. We have to break the silence and bring criminals like this to justice.

Let's take a look at some statistics on child molesters. You will find this troubling, but today I have more resolve than ever. Somewhere in a small corner, a backyard, compound, dark closet, hut, dwelling, is a small child suffering a terrible fate. My heart is heavy for them and my determination has taken over.

Child Molester Statistics

This excerpt is taken from, Yello Dyno, Protecting Children From Child Molestors

"The serial killer has the same personality characteristics as the sex offender against children"-Dr. Mace Knapp, Nevada State Prison Psychologist.• "There are 400,000 registered sex offenders in the United States, and an estimated 80 to 100,000 of them are missing. They're supposed to be registered, but we don't know where they are and we don't know where they're living.- Ernie Allen, President of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to co-anchor Hannah Storm on The Early Show

• The most serious and chronic offenders often show signs of antisocial behavior as early as the preschool years.- (American Psychiatric Association, 1994) (was in Juvenile Justice Bulletin: Nov 1998 OJJDP: U.S. Department of Justice)• Dr. Gene Abel estimates that between 1% and 5% of our population molest children -CNN Specials Transcript #454-Thieves of Childhood.

• Nearly all the offenders in sexual assaults reported to law enforcement were male (96%).- Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement, 7/00, NCJ 182990, U.S. Department of Justice

• Overall, 23% of sexual assault offenders were under 18 and 77% were adults - Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement,7/00, NCJ 182990, U.S. Department of Justice

• 40% of the offenders of victims under age 6 were themselves juveniles. A similar proportion (39%) of offenders of victims ages 6 through 11 were also juveniles. For older juvenile victims, the proportion of juvenile offenders dropped to 27%.- Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement,7/00, NCJ 182990, U.S. Department of Justice

•Adults were the offender in 60% of the sexual assaults of youth under age 12. Rarely were the offenders of young victims strangers. Strangers were the offender in just 3% of sexual assaults against victims under age 6 and 5% of the sexual assault of victimization of youth ages 6 through 11.-Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement,7/00, NCJ 182990, U.S. Department of Justice

• 1 in 5 violent offenders serving time in a state prison reported having victimized a child.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• 2/3 of all prisoners convicted of rape or sexual assault had committed their crime against a child.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• Acquaintance perpetrators are the most common abusers, constituting approximately 70-90% of all reported perpetrators.-Finkelhor, D. 1994.

• 89% of child sexual assault cases involve persons known to the child, such as a caretaker or family acquaintance.-Diana Russell Survey, 1978

• 29% of child sexual abuse offenders are relatives, 60% are acquaintances, and only 11% are strangers.-Diana Russell, The Secret Trauma, NY:Basic Books, 1986.

• For the vast majority of child victimizers in State prison, the victim was someone they knew before the crime. 1/3 had committed their crime against their own child, about 1/2 had a relationship with the victim as a friend, acquaintance, or relative other than offspring, about 1 in 7 reported the victim to have been a stranger to them.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• 3/4 of the violent victimizations of children took place in either the victim's home or the offenders home.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• Males are reported to be the abusers in 80-95% of cases-Thoringer, D., et al., 1988.

• About 60% of the male survivors sampled report at least one of their perpetrators to be female.-Mendel, 1993.

• All but 3% of offenders who committed violent crimes against children were male.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

•The typical offender is male, begins molesting by age 15, engages in a variety of deviant behavior, and molests an average of 117 youngsters, most of whom do not report the offense.-Dr. Gene Abel in a National Institute of Mental Health Study.

• Offenders who had victimized a child were on average 5 years older than the violent offenders who had committed their crimes against adults. Nearly 25% of child victimizers were age 40 or older, but about 10% of the inmates with adult victims fell in that range.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• 71% of male offenders are under the age of 35.-Dr. Ann Burges, Dr. Nicholas Groth, et al. in a study of imprisoned offenders.

• 3/4 of sexual predators are younger than 35. About 80% are of normal intelligence or above.-Profiles from the FBI Academy and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.

• Though officially, not considered abuse, the highest incidence of incest occurs among siblings.-Waterman & Lusk, 1986.

• Many clinical settings currently are witnessing a dramatic increase in the number of adolescent offenders who have committed sexually aggressive acts against other children.-Conte, Jon R., 1986.

• While nearly 70% of those serving time for violent crimes against children were white, whites accounted for 40% of those imprisoned for violent crimes against adults.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• Inmates who victimized children were less likely than other inmates to have a prior criminal record-nearly 1/3 of child victimizers had never been arrested prior to the current offense, compared to less than 20% of those who victimized adults.--BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• Violent child victimizers were substantially more likely than those with adult victims to have been physically or sexually abused when they were children..-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• 50% of reported child molestations involve the use of physical force and child molesters produce as much visible physical injury as rapists-39% of victims.-Dr. Gene Abel in a National Institute of Mental Health Study.

• About 14% of child victimizers carried a weapon during the violent crime, compared to nearly 1/2 of those who victimized adults.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• About 10% of violent offenders with child victims received life or death sentences and the average prison term was 11 years, somewhat shorter average sentences than received by those with adult victims.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• More than 1/2 of all convicted sex offenders are sent back to prison within a year. Within 2 years, 77.9% are back.-California Department of Corrections.

• Recidivism rates range from 18-45%. The more violent the crime the more likelihood of repeating.-Studies by the state of Washington.

• 3 in 10 child victimizers reported that they had committed their crimes against multiple victims: they were more likely than those who victimized adults to have had multiple victims.-BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

• Like rape, child molestation is one of the most under reported crimes: only 1-10% are ever disclosed.-FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin.

• The behavior is highly repetitive, to the point of compulsion, rather than resulting from a lack of judgment.-Dr. Ann Burges, Dr. Nicholas Groth, et al. in a study of imprisoned offenders

These statistics are horrible and show that there has to be more education in our homes, schools and community. Keep you eyes and ears to the ground. Check your children out. Ensure that you have great communication between you and your children. Let's save a life.

Til next time...

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