It takes willpower, an aggressive mindset, money and a top-notch lawyer to counter false abuse charges. Dean Tong’s survival tips are a must for anyone wrongly accused. Also, see the signs of bona fide sexual abuse versus fabricated sexual abuse.
If you’ve been wrongly accused of child abuse:
Race to Justice!
- Retain expert legal counsel. Peruse Martindale-Hubbell at your local library.
- Anticipate the worst is yet to come. Yet you must stay cool, calm and collective.
- Create a timeline or chronology as you perceive the events and circumstances leading up to the accusation(s).
- Educate yourself and your legal counsel. Read the current scientific literature by Ceci, Loftus, and other mental health researchers who specialize in child/adult development and memory.
- Study the groundbreaking work on children’s suggestibilities and cognition by one of the foremost researchers in the world – Dr. Stephen Ceci, author of Jeopardy in the Courtroom. To order, call 1-800-374-2721.
Dean Tong, a nationally recognized authority in combating false abuse allegations, offers his advice. A complete version is available in his books.
What to Do If You Have Been Accused
- Recognize you’re in for the fight of your life.
- Become familiar with Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), Sexual Allegations in Divorce (SAID) and Recovered Memory Therapy (RMT) aka False Memory Syndrome (FMS).
- Find the necessary resources to retain expert legal counsel.
- Make sure your lawyer can litigate in the court applicable to your case — juvenile dependency, family, criminal, appellate, or federal.
- Attempt to electronically record all interviews with the alleged child victim.
- File a request for production of documents with Child Protective Services.
- Attempt to suppress all further therapies with the alleged child victim.
- Retain your own mental health expert to evaluate the child’s competency as a witness and credibility.
- File motions in limine to stop any prospective unscientific evidence from being used against you in court.
- Retain an expert pediatrician, if necessary, to refute alleged medical findings as “consistent with sexual abuse.”
- Retain an FCC licensed video/audio expert, if a tape of anatomically “correct” dolls is made by CPT.
- Make sure your attorney is assisted by an expert trial consultant and/or private investigator.
- Try and win your case before it proceeds to trial.
- Get all depositions “typed up.”
- Make sure your lawyer is effective at voir dire (jury questioning).
- Take the necessary psycho-sexual tests to prove your innocence.
- Secure at least supervised visits with alleged child victim, if it’s a child you live with.
- Record every conversation with social workers, either in person or by phone, so they cannot twist your words or report that you said something that you did not say, such as confess to your guilt.
- Click on a leading Family Rights Support Group for help – www.familyrightsassociation.com
- Fairly recent research suggests that SAID accusers, usually mothers about 3/4 of the time, suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). BPD sufferers often use the psychological phenomena of projection, whereby they try to pawn off their own responsibilities onto others. The falsely accused in a SAID case should have the accuser independently evaluated for prospective BPD.
What Not to Do If You Have Been Accused
- Plea bargain, plead nolo contendre, no contest or accept an Alford plea or acceptance into a KIDS program.
- Be afraid to question your attorney or his competence.
- Retain a lawyer or psychologist without first perusing their Curriculum Vitae (CV).
- Admit to a crime that you did not commit.
- Try to reconcile a relationship with a SAID accuser.
- Antagonize CPS, guardians-ad-litem, adversarial counsel or the psychologists in your case. Waive your Constitutional Rights, including the right to a speedy trial.
- Expect positive results during motion practice.
- Talk to social workers or anyone else about your case unless your attorney okays it and is preferably present. Your words, even to friends, can turned against you in court.
- Lose your love for your child. Remember, it’s not the child’s fault!
- Give up! Your life and that of your child’s depends upon your persevering.
Bona Fide Sexual Abuse
- Child discloses via “free” recall.
- Child exhibits physical signs of abuse (e.g. positive gonorrhea slide or semen in his/her urinalysis.)
- Child appears genuinely “scared” in front of alleged perpetrator.
Fabricated Sexual Abuse
- Mother and child “have” to tell the whole world. Mother can’t take no for an answer.
- Descriptions have preposterous scenarios: having sex in spaceships, blood-letting, and animal sacrifices.
- Child’s story is largely inconsistent over time, embellishes, and is reported out of an acrimonious divorce, custody battle, visitation dispute or financial conflict.