child sexual abuse statistics Child sex abuse is a reprehensible crime that typically leaves the young victim with a lifetime of pain, confusion, and suffering. Sexual abuse survivors need a strong advocate who can protect their rights and obtain the compensation they deserve.

Are you a victim of child sexual abuse (CSA), or has a sexual predator harmed your loved one? The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can help. Contact our sexual abuse attorneys at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free consultation.

Child sexual abuse statistics maintained by U.S. Child Protective Services report that over 57,000 children were victimized by sexual abuse in 2016. Many girls and boys are the victims of sexual violence, and sexual abuse involving fondling, genital exposure, and teen pregnancy by trusted adults.

What is Child Sexual Abuse?

According to RAINN (The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), any sexual activity including physical touching, child pornography, or genital exposure between two minors or an adult and minor is considered child sexual abuse (CSA).

Some forms of child abuse involve attempted rape, molestation, forced sexual intercourse, forcible sodomy, fondling, and incest with a father, step-father, mother, stepmother, sibling, grandparents, aunts, and uncles.

Many cases of child abuse involve sexual gratification of the child or perpetrator, voyeurism, soliciting the minor for prostitution, or sexual communication of any kind over the Internet, on the phone, or face-to-face. Childhood sexual abuse can involve newborns, toddlers, young boys, and girls, tweens, and teenagers.

The prevalence of child sexual abuse remains unknown due to the high number of cases that are never reported. However, some statistics reveal that likely one-half million newborns in any given year will be the victim of sexual assault in at least one incidence before they mature.

Prevalence of Child Sexual Abuse

Child sexual abuse (CSA) is a global problem that causes the victims lifelong challenges. Sexual violence, fondling, intercourse, and sodomy happen in every age, and socioeconomic class, and in nearly every country.

In the United States, millions of people are victims of childhood sexual abuse. Statistics involving the prevalence rates of sexual abuse involving kids include:

  • Over 10% of all boys and girls experience some sexual abuse before reaching adulthood and never share their experience with families and friends
  • Child Protective Services reports that over 50% of all child sexual abuse survivors were assaulted or molested before the kids were twelve years of age
  • Approximately 82% of all childhood sexual abuse survivors are female
  • A disabled minor is 300% more likely to be sexually abused than other boys and girls
  • About 10% of boys and 33% of girls participating in the Juvenile Justice System are child sexual abuse (CSA) victims who experience sexual violence, assault, and abuse
  • Child Protective Services reports that approximately 40,000 men and 5000 women in 2013 are charged with sexual assault in the U.S.
  • Girls between 16 and 19 years of age are four times as likely to be victims of sexual abuse, rape, or attempted rape than the general population
  • RAINN (The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) reports that Child protective agencies validate child sexual abuse evidence every nine minutes on average
  • The Research Update Review reports that most cases of child sexual abuse go unreported and the victims never receive the help and support they need when children and adults
  • Children 4 years and younger are often targeted by sexual offenders which could include a teacher, coach, grandparent, cousins, siblings, clergy member, and daycare staff member
  • Approximately 90% of all child sexual abuse cases involved a known perpetrator that could have been a family member, religious leader, teacher, coach, or youth counselor
  • The nation’s lifetime economic burden of all sexual abuse cases involving children in the U.S. in 2019 was over $9 billion
  • Data reveals that approximately 20% of adult women and 10% of adult men recall that they were involved in child sexual abuse
  • Reports indicate that approximately 30% of all adult college students have been sexually assaulted when children or adolescents
  • The National Institute of Justice report revealed that 75% of adolescents experienced child sexual abuse by someone they knew
  • Studies indicate that 60% of children 14 to 17 years of age revealed that they had been sexually victimized during a single year
  • The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) reveals that there are likely over 42 million adults in the U.S. who were victimized by sexual assault during their childhood
  • The prevalence of child sexual assault is at its highest between the ages of 7 and 13
  • The Bureau of Justice Statistics reveals that 1.6% of minors 12 to 17 years of age have been child victims of rape/sexual abuse
  • Data reveals that 63% of adult women who were sexually assaulted, raped, or involved in an attempted rape by family members were fifteen years or older when abused
  • Many child sexual abuse survivors develop low self-esteem, distorted or abnormal views of sex, mental health problems, and a feeling of worthlessness
  • Children living with a single parent due to domestic violence, divorce, or parental discord have an increased risk of being sexually assaulted
  • Only approximately 15% of children will display any consistent genital injury involving child sexual abuse in cases where credible evidence of penetration is validated
  • The Journal of Adolescent Health reveals that teen male victims of sexual abuse are five times more likely to have unprotected sex and cause teen pregnancy than those without a child sexual abuse history

Unreported Childhood Sexual Abuse Statistics

A U.S. Department of Justice study revealed that approximately 82% of all sexual assault and rape cases are never reported. Many child sexual abuse survivors never tell anyone what happened, even if the assaults occurred decades ago.

Most older child sexual abuse (CSA) victims are afraid that they will not be believed or others will not take their accusations seriously. Their reluctance to report any abuse incident might involve:

Fear – RAINN statistics identify fear as the number one reason younger children never tell their parents or other adults of their abuse, likely because the perpetrator threatened the child with harming them, their parents, or siblings

Shame – Studies show that a sexually abused child likely does not understand they have been victimized and believe what happened was their fault and not the predator doing something wrong

Denial – The child sexual abuse victim might be in denial about what occurred and is too embarrassed to speak up, knowing that the situation makes them uncomfortable to discuss.

Predator respect – A sexually abused child might choose not to report the sexual assault due to the love respect they have for their abuser that could be a grandparent, parent, sibling, relative, church leader, teacher, or others they respect

Headaches, chronic stomach pain, and high-level anxiety are often the indirect physical indicators of a child who’s been sexually assaulted. Many of these children develop behavioral and emotional signals, including depression, fear, withdrawal, rebellion, unexplained anger, or acting “too perfectly.”

Others display typical consequences of child sexual abuse (CSA) trauma, including bedwetting, nightmares, animal cruelty, bullying, being bullied, falling grades, self-harming, fire setting, and running away from home.

The Need for Child Protective Services

All children who have been sexually abused suffer long-term impacts that could affect their entire lives. Many young victims of child sexual abuse (CSA) suffered greatly without immediate intervention, counseling, and supportive families with experience handling abuse cases.

Childhood Protective Services provide valuable opportunities to remove children from dangerous situations where sex offenders could repeatedly abuse and violate the child. Statistics and facts involving the long-term impact of sexual assault involving children include:

  • Child protective services reveal that only about 20% of all child sexual abuse incidents are reported by school personnel
  • Studies show that only 76% of school personnel received written or oral guidelines on how to report child sexual abuse
  • Data reveals that child sexual abuse victims can suffer a delay in normal development
  • Many child sexual abuse survivors continue to feel unbearable guilt, anxiety, and shame
  • It often takes decades for a child sexual abuse survivor two understand they were victimized
  • Law enforcement statistics reveal that some sex offenders have had hundreds of victims
  • Data reveals that approximately 20% of cases involving criminally charged rapists never lead to a conviction
  • Child protective teams (CPTs) that typically work for the Department of Health receive specialized training to investigate reported abuse
  • A sexual predator can be charged with a crime and held financially accountable through the civil court

While the victim’s family might not have any say when participating in the criminal process of holding a sexual predator accountable, they do have the right to file a civil lawsuit that provides more freedom and holds the abuser liable for the unspeakable acts

Experienced social workers can reduce the trauma the child will experience after the sexual assault is reported. Typically, Acquiring evidence might require a physical examination and a psychological assessment to determine the extent of the victim’s harm.

In many cases, adults without experience in sexual assault cases might not believe that the child was telling the truth. An experienced lawyer that handles child sexual abuse (CSA) cases can serve as the child’s advocate, protect their rights, and initiate an investigation to stop the predator and hold them accountable.

Child Sexual Abuse and Building Relationships in Adulthood

Many child sexual abuse victims develop posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, and symptoms of anxiety that can last a lifetime. Their typical psychological and sexual developments can result in distress and dysfunction long into adulthood.

Many of their behavioral problems involve noncompliance, physical aggression, and possibly sexually assaulting adults and children. The US Health and Human Services Children’s Bureau revealed concerns in building and maintaining relationships during and after maturity that include:

  • Many child sexual abuse victims struggle with intimate relationships after maturity
  • Approximately 45% of teen pregnancies involve females with a history of child sexual abuse long before becoming pregnant
  • Data reveals that many child victims of sexual assault develop lifelong sexual issues that can destroy normal relationship intimacy
  • Many sexually assaulted female teenagers suffer emotional and mental health consequences and long-term physical problems, including unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases
  • Female child sexual abuse victims are thirteen times more likely than males to be sexually assaulted again during adulthood
  • Male adult survivors of childhood sexual assault are not as likely to report substance abuse issues as female adult sexual assault victims
  • Young adults women with a history of sexual abuse as children are four times as likely to develop an eating disorder than non-abused women
  • Sexually abused adolescents are nearly five times as likely to run the risk of delinquency and nearly three times as likely to run away from home
  • Child sexual abuse victims are 30% more likely to develop severe medical conditions than their counterparts, including heart problems, cancer, diabetes, hypertension, or stroke
  • Non-abuse males are 50% less likely to acquire an HIV infection than male child sexual abuse survivors
  • Child sexual abuse males are more likely to commit a violent act against others than non-abused males and females
  • Some studies show that approximately 90% of all individuals with a developmental delay or disability will be sexually abused at least once during their lifetime
  • Data reveals that child sexual abuse victims are twice as likely to experience non-sexual intimate partner violence
  • Sexually abused children tend to score lower on quantitative psychometric testing to determine academic achievement, cognitive ability, and memory assessment than other children
  • Grade retention, high school absentee rates, and school adaptation challenges have been linked to child sexual abuse
  • Child sexual abuse females between seven and twelve years old were 50% more likely to register under the 25th percentile in cognitive abilities and mental health
  • Boyce assaulted by sexual violence are six times more likely to attempt suicide during adulthood than males without a history of sexual assault
  • Sexually abused girls are nine times more likely to attempt suicide during adulthood, especially when dealing with mental health issues, than females without a history of sexual assault
  • Child sexual abuse victims have increasingly riskier behaviors, including crime, than others without a history of abuse
  • Data reveals that child sexual abuse is one of the many significant risk factors in school dropout rates
  • The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) reports that many child sexual abuse victims develop posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, opioid, and drug abuse, and risky sexual behavior, including multiple partners and unprotected sexual activity

Perpetrator Child Sexual Abuse Statistics

Most sexual perpetrators that molest minors behave like everyone else in public. Many families and friends do not recognize the person as a sexual predator when they interact at church, school, neighborhood, or youth sports leagues.

Many sexual abusers are family members, friends, and neighbors that had access to the young child. Other perpetrator sexual abuse statistics include:

  • The National Center for Missing and Excluded Children identify nearly 100,000 registered sex offenders who have no known listed address out of the approximately 500,000 on the list
  • The vast majority of child abuse predators or men that are respected in the community with access to minors at churches, clubs, and schools with access to children of any age
  • Studies reveal that there are sexual perpetrators in every social-economic class, religion, race, and age group
  • Approximately 70% of all child sexual abusers have victimized 1 to 9 victims
  • Approximately 20% of all child sexual abusers have victimized 10 to 40 victims
  • Studies show that more powerful children assault up to 40% of minors involved in child sexual abuse
  • Strangers assault less than 10% of all sexually abused minors of any age
  • About 20% of all child sexual abuse victims were assaulted when they were seven years old or younger
  • Female perpetrators are involved in approximately 38% of all child sexual abuse cases involving male minors
  • Statistics show that early adolescence (12 to 13 years of age) remains the peak age for young offenders that sexually assault younger children
  • Nearly 30% of victims of sexual abuse were assaulted by a family member when they were a child
  • Family members are more likely to be found as the sexual predator in young child abuse cases in nearly any age
  • Sexual abuse victimization of very young children usually involves family members
  • Approximate 23% of all child abuse cases involve family members where the victims were 12 to 17 years of age
  • About six of every ten child abuse cases involved an individual that the family trusted with children of any age
  • Homosexual men and women are no more likely to be a sexual predators than a heterosexual men or woman
  • Most children that sexually abuse others will likely not become adult sexual offenders years or decades after their inappropriate sexual experience occurred
  • Some children involved in sexual violence at any age will develop mental health issues and drug abuse issues
  • Studies show that not all child sexual abuse predators are pedophiles when other diverse motivations are involved
  • Many sexual perpetrators will groom their victim before or during repeated sexual assault by giving gifts, isolating the child from others, filling a familial role, or meeting the child’s unmet requirements. Many sexual offenders will gradually crossover social and physical boundaries and become increasingly sexual or intimate with their victims while using blame, secrecy, and threats to maintain their control.

Reporting Child Sex Abuse (CSA)

Any individual suspicious that a child is being sexually molested, exploited, or abused can call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children on their Cyber Tipline at (800) 843-5678. Operators are standing by twenty-four hours every day.

Child Protective Services accepts reports and will likely investigate any situation involving child abuse or inform the police to investigate and prosecute the crime. Filing with multiple agencies and authorities can ensure that someone will take action.

You can also call the Stop It Now! Helpline at (888) PREVENT (773-8368) Or Child Health USA at (800) 4-A-Child (422-4453). Reporting any case through a child sexual abuse prevention program not only saves child victims now but helps reduce crimes and improves the victim’s quality of life.

Any sexually abused child must get the best support to learn mental health coping mechanisms and help to stop repeated assaults to avoid the many adverse consequences of molestation. Some suspicious indicators of sexual violence, abuse, or molestation could include:

  • The child is revealing consistent warning signs of sexual assault or is at risk of being abused
  • The minor states that an adult or another child is sexually assaulting them
  • The minor has said that other children have engaged them in sexually harmful behavior
  • The child indicates that they have sexually harmed other children
  • An adult has revealed that they are sexually abusing children
  • Anyone has found child pornography online
  • Anyone has become aware that other children or adults are viewing child pornography

To report child abuse, you will need to provide as much factual information as you have, including the names and addresses of those involved, the vulnerability of the abuse victim, their relationship to the predator, and any other relevant facts.

The information you provide can help initiate an investigation into the crime, begin gathering evidence, and serve as an essential part of helping the child strengthen their mental health to handle the assault.

Don’t Be a Statistic. Contact a Child Sexual Abuse Attorney Today to Protect Your Rights

Are you an adult survivor of child sexual abuse or their parent? All sexual abuse survivors are entitled to receive justice. Contact the personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC to answer any questions about your rights.

Contact our childhood sexual abuse lawyers at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free consultation. Our compassionate law firm will listen to your story in a confidential setting.


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