Champaign County Juvenile Detention Sex Abuse Lawyer

July 8, 2024 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman

Sexual abuse of youth in juvenile detention facilities is a heartbreaking reality that has devastated too many lives in Illinois and across the country. Detained children, who are among society's most vulnerable, have faced appalling mistreatment and exploitation by the very individuals tasked with their supervision and care. 

If your child has suffered sexual abuse while in the Champaign County juvenile detention system, a compassionate Champaign County juvenile detention sex abuse lawyer can help your family seek justice, accountability, and healing.

Contact the Dolman Law Group today for a free consultation to learn how our dedicated and experienced juvenile detention sexual abuse attorney can help you obtain the compensation and justice you deserve.

Contact a Champaign County Juvenile Detention Sex Abuse Lawyer Today

What Is Champaign County Juvenile Detention Sex Abuse?

Champaign County Juvenile Detention Sex Abuse Lawyer

Sexual abuse that occurs in Illinois juvenile detention can take many forms, including:

  • Sexual assault and rape
  • Coerced sexual acts 
  • Sexual harassment and grooming behaviors
  • Invasive searches and violations of bodily privacy
  • Retaliation for refusing or reporting sexual advances

Certain factors can increase a detained child's vulnerability to abuse, such as:

  • Histories of prior abuse, neglect, or sexual violence
  • Mental health conditions or cognitive/developmental disabilities
  • Lack of family support or resources
  • Minority race, ethnicity, LGBTQ+ identity or other marginalized status

The trauma of sexual abuse is especially devastating for youth, who are still in key stages of emotional, psychological, and neurological development. Survivors often struggle with depression, anxiety, PTSD, substance abuse, self-harm, interpersonal problems, and increased risk of suicide. The physical impacts can include injuries, STIs, unwanted pregnancy, and somatic health issues. Processing this difficult experience and beginning to heal requires extensive support and care.

Detained youth have a fundamental right to be free from sexual abuse and harassment. The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) sets standards for preventing, detecting, and responding to sexual misconduct in detention facilities. Victims have legal recourse to hold perpetrators and negligent institutions accountable when someone violates this right.

Victims have the right to report abuse to facility officials, law enforcement, child welfare agencies, or the courts and to have their allegations promptly and thoroughly investigated. PREA and Illinois state law mandate access to forensic medical exams, emergency contraception, STI testing/treatment, and crisis intervention services. Ongoing medical and mental health care, including counseling with a trained professional, should be made available. 

Survivors can also pursue civil legal action against individual abusers and facilities whose failure to implement proper safeguards, supervise staff, or address known risks substantially contributed to the abuse. A civil lawsuit can provide compensation for the physical, psychological, and economic damages victims suffer. It can also serve to hold institutions accountable and push for needed reform. In some cases, criminal charges may also be brought against perpetrators.

How Can a Champaign County Juvenile Detention Sex Abuse Lawyer Help?

Taking legal action against the powerful system that failed to keep your child safe can feel overwhelming, but you don't have to face it alone. An experienced Champaign County juvenile detention sex abuse lawyer can guide you through the process, protect your family's rights, and relentlessly advocate for the best possible outcome.

A skilled attorney will start by sensitively listening to you and your child to understand what happened. They will then investigate to gather key evidence, including incident reports, medical records, video surveillance footage, and witness testimony. If the facility does not cooperate with records requests, your lawyer can file subpoenas to compel disclosure.

Your legal team will build a strong case demonstrating:

  1. The abuse your child suffered 
  2. How the abuse harmed your child
  3. The facility's failure to take reasonable steps to prevent the abuse

Depending on the case, your Illinois juvenile detention center sexual abuse attorney may file a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator and/or a separate action against the facility/officials. Throughout the process, your lawyer will work to protect your child's privacy, advocate for their rights and needed services, and pursue maximum compensation for all damages.

How to Choose the Right Sex Abuse Lawyer for Your Case

When your child's well-being and future are at stake, having the right attorney by your side makes all the difference. Look for a lawyer who has specific experience successfully handling juvenile detention abuse cases. They should understand the unique dynamics, relevant laws, and most effective strategies for these claims.

Dolman Law Sex Abuse Lawyers Team standing and sitting behind large table

Beyond legal skills, your attorney should have genuine compassion for what your family has endured. Your lawyer should treat you with respect, make your child's comfort a top priority, and take time to thoroughly answer all your questions. They should be responsive, give honest advice, and have the dedication to see your case through.

Key questions to ask a potential lawyer during a free initial consultation include:

  • How many juvenile detention abuse cases have you handled? What were the outcomes?
  • What do you think are the strengths and challenges of our case? 
  • Who will be working on our case and how will we communicate?
  • What is your fee structure and what costs should we anticipate?

Choosing the attorney you trust is a highly personal decision. By taking time to find the right fit, you can gain a fierce advocate with effective skills and a genuine commitment to fight for your child.

How Long Do I Have to File a Lawsuit for Sex Abuse Against a Champaign County Juvenile Detention Facility?

Dolman Law Group

Illinois law has specific provisions for cases involving sexual abuse. The time limit to file a lawsuit for sex abuse against a Champaign County juvenile detention facility is 20 years from the time a victim turns 18—or 20 years from the date you discover an injury arising from childhood sexual abuse.

If you need to file a lawsuit against a public entity, such as a county juvenile detention facility, there may be additional notice requirements and shorter time frames. Claims against public entities typically require a notice of claim to be filed within one year of the incident. However, this does not replace the actual statute of limitations for filing the lawsuit.

You must consult an attorney who handles sexual abuse cases in Illinois to get precise guidance based on the specifics of your situation. They can help ensure that you meet all procedural requirements and file your claim within the appropriate time frame.

Contact Our Experienced Champaign County Sexual Abuse Attorneys

Personal Injury Attorney, Matthew Dolman

At the Dolman Law Group, we understand how much courage it takes for survivors and families to come forward after the devastating trauma of abuse. We are here to listen without judgment, explain your rights and options, and tenaciously advocate for the financial recovery and justice you deserve. You do not have to suffer in silence or navigate this painful time alone.

Contact the trusted Champaign County juvenile detention sex abuse lawyers at Dolman Law Group today at (312) 500-2901 for your free and confidential consultation. We are here for you.

Contact a Champaign County Juvenile Detention Sex Abuse Lawyer Today


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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