Elder Sexual Abuse


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Riverside Elder Sexual Abuse Lawyers

Riverside elder abuse attorneys advocating for sexually abuse seniors in California

Any action taken by an individual involving unwanted sexual touching or attention against a senior is elder sexual abuse. Discovering elder sexual abuse can be challenging, but a Riverside sexual abuse attorney can help you seek justice for your loved one. Nursing homes and in-home caretakers can be predators in disguise. They will pretend they care about your loved one and that you can trust them while they are abusing them in one of the most heinous ways. Any elder can be sexually abused. Speak to a Riverside elder abuse attorney from Garcia & Artigliere about your options and how to hold these predators liable - call us today to assert your rights.

Elder abuse attorney Stephen M. Garcia obtained $5.4 million dollars for an 87-year-old woman who was repeatedly sexually molested by the co-manager of a residential care facility. The co-manager had a long history of alleged sexual misconduct at the facility, but none of the incidents of elder abuse were reported to either Adult Protective Services or to the Department of Social Services. Upon discovery, the nursing home fired the co-manager and waited 8 days to report his actions to the police, giving him time to flee.


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What is elder sexual abuse?

Seniors face many types of abuse, but one of the most traumatic is sexual abuse, which can be damaging to the individual and their families. Unfortunately, it affects seniors nationwide and can happen to anyone anytime. The most common forms of elder sexual abuse include:

  • Sexual assault
  • Rape
  • Sexual battery
  • Sodomy
  • Unwanted touching or groping to any areas of the body
  • Sexual harassment
  • Suggestive or nude photography of the senior or another resident
  • Miscellaneous types of sexual violence.

Elder sexual abuse is the same as other types of sexual assault. Most elder sexual abuse cases happen in nursing homes and extended care facilities, but they can also occur in private residences. You have legal recourse available if you find your loved one was sexually abused by a caretaker in their home or at a care facility. The Glendale elder sexual abuse attorneys at Garcia & Artigliere will review the facts and work with experts to show how the abuse has impacted your loved one's life.

What is sexual abuse of the elderly?

Sexual abuse encompasses a range of actions, and they are all harmful to seniors. Suppose a caregiver makes sexual advances? This conduct is inappropriate and could be sufficient to constitute a sexual abuse claim. What makes sexual abuse so egregious is that many of these victims are unwilling or unable to speak up. Sometimes, it is due to cognitive capacities or physical ailments. Other times, it is from fear and embarrassment.

Nursing homes and caregivers are responsible for providing basic human needs like clean living conditions, medical care, and food. Seniors have a Nursing Home Bill of Rights that outlines their rights. One of those is freedom from abuse and to be treated with respect. Any non-consensual sexual contact with an elderly individual is sexual abuse.


What are the signs an elderly person in Riverside has been sexually abused?

As with most cases of sexual abuse, elder sexual abuse is underreported. While some reasons overlap, there are issues specific to seniors. Victims who have mental conditions like dementia can be incapable of reporting abuse. In other cases, the senior will not report out of fear of retaliation. They may think no one will believe them. These factors mean that it is up to family and friends to identify elder sexual abuse. If you see these signs, you should report it and take legal action:

  • Bruising in the genital area or upper thighs
  • Genital or pelvic injuries
  • STDs
  • Having trouble walking or sitting
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempted suicide
  • Bleeding in the pelvic region
  • Blood on undergarments
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Irritation near the genitals
  • Panic attacks that are mainly triggered around specific caregivers
  • Anger, guilt, or shame

Check on your seniors if they live alone and have a caretaker or if they reside in a nursing home or long-term care facility. If you cannot visit, you should speak to them regularly to see how they are doing. Try to check on them when alone so they are more likely to express themselves. For in-person visits, note the senior's behavior, health, nutrition, living arrangements, and physical appearance. If they report sexual abuse, you must speak to a Riverside sexual abuse attorney immediately.

Why are the elderly sexually abused in Riverside?

The reasons why sexual abuse occurs have little to do with the victim. Abusers have a history of committing these heinous crimes and know who to target and how to cover up abuse. They will usually go for victims they feel they can overpower, such as those who are vulnerable. Additionally, they choose elderly individuals because they think they will not be punished for it. Often, they choose seniors who are isolated or easily confused. Predators will often have underlying issues that can lead to them committing these crimes, such as:

  • A criminal background
  • Drug and alcohol abuse
  • Sexual deviance
  • Problems in their personal life
  • Untreated mental illness

Sexual abuse of the elderly can happen to men and women, although it disproportionately affects women more than men. While many believe it occurs in nursing homes, it can happen anywhere, including in the senior's home. Sexual abuse can be perpetrated in several ways, including:

  • Forced nudity
  • Sexual intercourse
  • Unwelcome verbal comments or advances
  • Forcing a senior to watch them masturbate or watch porn
  • Unwanted touching
  • Taking nude or explicit photos or videos of the senior

If you suspect sexual abuse, call the California Adult Protective Services Agency at 1-833-401-0832 to report the abuse. The agency can then cross-report to law enforcement to begin an intervention. You also need to seek legal assistance from a Riverside elder abuse attorney.

Who is liable for the sexual abuse of seniors in Riverside?

Elder sexual abuse can happen anywhere in Riverside, including a hospice, extended living facility, nursing home, or at the senior's home. Caretakers and family members can be the predators of this abuse. When it is someone outside of the family, multiple parties could be liable for the abuse. Caretakers who work in homes are placed through agencies, and their supervising agencies are responsible for their behavior and must ensure they go through a vetting process not to hire negligent caretakers.

If you suspect elder sexual abuse, you should move your loved one to a safe space before you take any action. You will want to remove them from the nursing home or get the caregiver out of the house and can involve the police to facilitate these actions. A Riverside elder sexual abuse attorney should be your next call. We can hold the following parties liable:

  • Caretaker
  • Nursing home
  • Staff members
  • Accomplices
  • Third parties
  • Relatives

You can file a civil claim to recover monetary damages in tandem with criminal prosecution, but they are different processes. The state prosecutors will dictate how the criminal investigation and charges go. Leave the civil case to Garcia & Artigliere.

How much is a Riverside elder sexual abuse claim worth?

When someone suffers sexual abuse, they feel their power has been taken away. Our goal is to give you your power back. Dependent adults can hold caregivers responsible for the abuse and recover compensation. Depending on individual factors, seniors could recover money for:

  • Abuse-related medical expenses
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Lower enjoyment of life
  • Mental or psychological harm
  • Wrongful death
  • Temporary or permanent disabilities
  • Punitive damages

The caretaker or nursing home is responsible for your loved one's safety and wellbeing. The nursing home could be held accountable when someone is negligent, and punitive damages are awarded in egregious situations. These damages punish entities for gross negligence or malicious intent.

Do you have a Riverside elder sexual abuse attorney near me?

The team at Garcia & Artigliere represents elderly sexual abuse victims in Riverside. We represent clients throughout California. This is a challenging situation for everyone involved. It is the highest breach of trust. It can affect the person's mental and emotional state. They can become reclusive and suffer other health complications. We understand your loved one may be distrustful, which is why we offer consultation options. We have offices in Long Beach and Los Angeles. We can also come to your home or schedule a video conference. Contact our Riverside sexual abuse attorney today.

Riverside elder abuse lawyers helping victims of sexual assault and rape

Victims of sexual abuse do not often speak up for themselves. That is why you must speak up for them, especially when it comes to fighting for compensation. Call the office of Garcia & Artigliere today to schedule a free consultation. You can also complete our contact form at your earliest convenience.

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