Prosecution of Child Sexual Abuse: A Partnership to Improve Outcomes, New England, 2009-2013 (ICPSR 37173)

Version Date: Jun 27, 2019 View help for published

Principal Investigator(s): View help for Principal Investigator(s)
Stephanie Block, University of Massachusetts at Lowell; Linda Williams, Wellesley Centers for Women

https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR37173.v2

Version V2 ()

  • V2 [2019-06-27]
  • V1 [2019-06-27] unpublished

These data are part of NACJD's Fast Track Release and are distributed as they were received from the data depositor. The files have been zipped by NACJD for release, but not checked or processed except for the removal of direct identifiers. Users should refer to the accompanying readme file for a brief description of the files available with this collection and consult the investigators if further information is needed.

This study conducted a retrospective analysis of how child sexual abuse cases referred for prosecution in several counties in one New England state over a five year period (2009-2013) progressed through the system. In particular, the study focused on the distribution of the cases' outcomes and factors associated with these outcomes.

The collection contains eight SPSS data files:

  • D1_General-Case-Details.sav (n=500; 103 variables)
  • D2_Background-Checks.sav (n=614; 9 variables)
  • D3_Trial-Information.sav (n=89; 123 variables)
  • D4_First-Victim-Details.sav (n=500; 289 variables)
  • D5_Add-Victim-Details.sav (n=54; 289 variables)
  • D6_First-Perp-Details.sav (n=500; 62 variables)
  • D7_Add-Perp-Details.sav (n=60; 62 variables)
  • D8_Medical-Information.sav (n=97; 35 variables)

Demographic variables include age, birth date (month and year), gender, race, ethnicity, living arrangements, number of siblings, immigration status and ability to speak English.

Block, Stephanie, and Williams, Linda. Prosecution of Child Sexual Abuse: A Partnership to Improve Outcomes, New England, 2009-2013. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2019-06-27. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR37173.v2

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United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (2014-MU-MU-0001)

None

Access to these data is restricted. Users interested in obtaining these data must complete a Restricted Data Use Agreement, specify the reason for the request, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research.

Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research
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2009-01 -- 2013-12
2014 -- 2018
  1. These data are part of NACJD's Fast Track Release and are distributed as they were received from the data depositor. The files have been zipped by NACJD for release, but not checked or processed except for the removal of direct identifiers. Users should refer to the accompanying readme file for a brief description of the files available with this collection and consult the investigators if further information is needed.

  2. The variable ShordID is the linking variable in this collection. The data in this collection can be linked to all data sets using the variable ShordID.

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The central aims of the study were to: (1) conduct research designed to increase knowledge of the criminal prosecution of child sexual abuse, the characteristics of cases that go forward to prosecution and the factors associated with case attrition; (2) enhance current and foster new researcher-practitioner collaborations to understand the barriers to prosecution; and (3) develop sustained working partnerships designed to increase successful prosecution of perpetrators while minimizing trauma to victims and families and to develop future research.

The project conducted a retrospective analysis of how child sexual abuse cases referred for prosecution over a five year period (2009-2013) progressed through the system in several counties in one New England state. Using five coding forms developed through a pilot study, graduate student research assistants, along with the principal investigator, coded and entered into SPSS files information in assistant district attorney (ADA) case files, ADA trial record boxes, electronic databases of the district attorney (DA) office, and any child advocacy center files when available. ADA's were also available to the researchers to address any questions from the research team. These data files were used to prepare a flow chart of case attrition and conduct multivariate logistic regression analysis to determine the predictors of case outcomes.

Altogether, 500 child sexual abuse cases were selected for analysis. At each of four district attorney (DA) offices, 125 cases were randomly selected from a list of child sexual abuse cases provided by the office.

Cross-sectional

Child sexual abuse cases referred for prosecution during 2009-2013 in several counties in one New England state.

Child sexual abuse cases and the alleged victims and perpetrators in the cases.

Assistant district attorney (ADA) case files, ADA trial record boxes, district attorney (DA) electronic databases and any child advocacy center files when available.

The collection contains eight SPSS data files:

D1_General-Case-Details.sav (n=500; 103 variables): covers general case details, such as the alleged victim's age, date of intake (month and year) by the district attorney's office, who referred the case to the district attorney's office, whether a decision was made to prosecute the case and barriers to prosecuting the case.

D2_Background-Checks.sav (n=614; 9 variables): covers the background checks done on the alleged victims and perpetrators involved in each case: whether there were multiple victims affiliated with the case, whether the victims were victims or perpetrators in other cases and whether the perpetrators were victims or perpetrators in other cases.

D3_Trial-Information.sav (n=89; 123 variables): contains information about the cases that were prosecuted: the criminal charges and their dispositions, conditions imposed on the perpetrator (e.g., registration in sexual offence registry, mental health evaluation and Global Positioning System (GPS) monitoring), whether the case went before the court clerk or grand jury and various aspects of the trial process, such as trial type, motions to suppress evidence, use of outside experts, testimony given and victim impact statements.

D4_First-Victim-Details.sav (n=500; 289 variables) and D5_Add-Victim-Details.sav (n=54; 289 variables): contain information about the first and additional victims identified in the case, respectively, including victim characteristics (gender, age, race, ethnicity, immigration status, ability to speak English, living situation, family demographics, vulnerability, and health status), type and duration of alleged abuse, type of evidence collected by police/investigators, time elapsed between the first sex abuse incident involving the perpetrator and first disclosure by the victim, and the use of coercion, grooming or offering of exchange to accomplish sexual contact.

D6_First-Perp-Details.sav (n=500; 62 variables) and D7_Add-Perp-Details.sav (n=60; 62 variables): contain information about the first and additional perpetrators identified in the case, respectively, including the number of victims, type of abuse and characteristics of the perpetrator (gender, age, race, ethnicity, immigration issues, ability to speak English, vulnerability, health status, relationship to the victim and whether the perpetrator was already a registered sex offender when the case was opened).

D8_Medical-Information.sav (n=97; 35 variables): covers any medical information included in the cases with references to medical evidence: indications of physical/medical exams (e.g., physician exam, trip to emergency room, pregnancy, rape kit performed) and place of exam and exam findings.

Not applicable

None

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2019-06-27

2019-06-27 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.
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Notes

  • These data are part of NACJD's Fast Track Release and are distributed as they were received from the data depositor. The files have been zipped by NACJD for release, but not checked or processed except for the removal of direct identifiers. Users should refer to the accompanying readme file for a brief description of the files available with this collection and consult the investigator(s) if further information is needed.

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

  • One or more files in this data collection have special restrictions. Restricted data files are not available for direct download from the website; click on the Restricted Data button to learn more.