classroom for childrenChild abuse is a serious crime to be sure. Unfortunately, people are falsely accused of this crime each year. Being falsely accused of child abuse can have lifelong consequences. Even when a person is acquitted of the charges, they have typically been so after spending thousands of dollars in attorney fees and incurred severe damage to their reputation. Particularly at risk are people who work with children on a daily basis. Taking steps to minimize false allegations of child abuse is important.

Reasons for False Accusations

People make false allegations for a variety of reasons. Children may accuse someone of abuse when they are being abused elsewhere. Parents may file charges because they are angry at a person or organization, because they are protecting someone else, or even because they are protecting themselves. Employees may file allegations as a form of retaliation.

Not all people who falsely accuse someone of child abuse do so knowingly. Some may misinterpret a situation, and others may have differing opinions on what constitutes abuse.

Protecting Yourself

If you work with children as a part of your occupation, here are ways that you can protect yourself against false allegations.

1. Avoid Being Alone

Avoid being alone in a room with a child when at all possible. Many organizations instill the rule of three. That is, there should be three people in the room at all times.

2. Record the Contact

It is not always possible to avoid a one-on-one situation. If this is the case, record the event. You may use your cell phone or have recording equipment installed in your workplace. Both video and audio recordings will be helpful in proving your innocence if you are falsely accused.

3. Encourage Visitors

It can be tempting to shut your door, especially if other rooms or the hallway is noisy, but avoid doing so. Keep your door open at all times and encourage other staff members to make random appearances.

4. Speak Up

Employees need to look out for each other. If you notice an employee putting themselves in situations where they may be opening themselves up to allegations, speak up. The more often people put themselves in these types of situations, the more complacent they become.

Being falsely accused of any crime is stressful. Being accused of child abuse can have lifelong consequences. If you find yourself wrongly accused of child abuse, you need an attorney immediately. Contact our team of criminal defense attorneys as soon as possible and schedule your free consultation.