According to the numbers, child sexual abuse is not stranger danger | News
KERSHAW COUNTY, SC (WIS)- Jacqlyn Baylis is Community Education Program Director for Sexual Trauma Services of the Midlands.
She said one in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18.
"I think it's about awareness education letting them know what the facts are, what the statistics state," said Baylis.
The numbers are staggering. Baylis said 80% of the children who are sexually abused know their abuser.
"We have to have open and honest conversations with our children that it's not always the stranger danger we see or that we hear about," said Baylis.
Baylis said conversations about sexuality, the difference between a good touch and a bad touch, and boundaries should be age appropriate.
She said parents should look out for these warning signs of possible abuse: Change in behavior, trouble sleeping or promiscuity.
Baylis said if you discover your child has been abused by someone the child knows, don't confront the suspected abuser.
"What we encourage is to keep the focus on the victim," she said. "Make sure the child is safe. Make sure the perpetrator doesn't have access to the child."
Just this week, Kershaw County Sheriff's Deputies arrested two men charged with molesting girls.
Deputies said James Owens sexually assaulted three girls close to his family. They say Owens started abusing one of the girls four years ago.
Brian Sharpe is charged with molesting an eight-year-old girl he knew.
Sheriff Jim Matthews said not all victims speak out. Sex abuse counselors estimate 60% of child sex crimes go unreported.
"That's the disturbing thing is that were are children right now being abused that we don't know about," said Kershaw County Sheriff Jim Matthews. "And if we don't know about it, we can't do anything."
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