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Texas Physical Child Abuse Lawyers

Texas Attorneys Providing Legal Representation for Child Abuse Victims

No child should have to suffer from physical abuse, but many of them endure this reality every day.

The attorneys at Thomas J. Henry Law are committed to advocating for abused children, seeking maximum compensation in the hopes that it may serve as a deterrent for future abuse.

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Identifying and Reporting Physical Abuse

According to ChildWelfare.gov, in 2014, an estimated 702,000 children were victims of abuse or neglect nationwide. Tragically, an estimated 1,580 children died from abuse and neglect alone in 2014. Nearly 63 percent of all reports of alleged child abuse or neglect were made by professionals.

Physical abuse in children can consist of shaking, punching, stabbing, throwing, hitting, beating, burning, or biting a child. Sadly, the abuser is most often one of the people you have entrusted to keep your children safe, such as a friend, relative, or daycare staff member.

No parent should have to live in constant fear for their child’s well-being. However, the first step of preventing or stopping the physical abuse of a child is being aware of the signs of physical abuse. According to the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence, here are some signs, both physical and emotional, that could be a result of physical child abuse:

  • Unexplained injuries (bruises, cuts, burns, bite marks, etc.)
  • Changes in behavior — abused children often appear scared, anxious, depressed, or aggressive.
  • Returning to earlier behaviors (such as thumb-sucking, bedwetting)
  • Fear of going home — abused children may express apprehension or anxiety about going places with the person who is abusing them.
  • Changes in eating — abused children may experience weight gain or weight loss due to stress, fear, and anxiety.
  • Changes in sleeping — abused children may have nightmares and difficulty falling asleep.
  • Changes in school performance and attendance — abused children may have difficulty concentrating in school or have excessive absences.
  • Lack of personal care of hygiene — abused children may appear uncared for, dirty, or have severe body odor.
  • Risk-taking behaviors (such as drug and alcohol use, or carrying a weapon)
  • Inappropriate sexual behaviors (overly sexualized behavior or use of explicit language)

The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) has a central place to report child abuse and neglect and abuse of a child in child-care facilities or treatment centers. Texas law says anyone who thinks a child is being abused, neglected, or exploited must report it to DFPS.

Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-422-4453

Texas Abuse Hotline: 1-800-252-5400

Thomas J. Henry’s Commitment to Child Welfare

Thomas J. Henry is committed to causes and organizations which aim to improve the welfare of children, especially children who have suffered abuse or neglect. ChildSafe is a Children’s Advocacy Center — and the only one in Bexar County — that provides specialized services to children and teenagers who have been physically abused, neglected, or sexually abused.

In 2015, Thomas J. Henry made a $350,000 donation to ChildSafe – the largest individual donation ChildSafe has ever received. This donation will allow for the design and establishment of a new web-based training meant to help teachers and school employees recognize the signs of child abuse and neglect.

Contact an Experienced Child Abuse Lawyer

If you believe that your child has been the victim of physical abuse, contact Thomas J. Henry. For over two decades, Thomas J. Henry has been an advocate for physical abuse victims across the state of Texas. Our experienced child injury lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to take your call. Contact us today for a free case review.

Contact Us for a Free Case Review

info@tjhlaw.com

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Your Child Abuse Questions Answered

We have straight answers to difficult questions to help you make critical decisions, navigate legal process and help you get justice.

Following an incident of child abuse, there are always more questions than answers. At Thomas J. Henry, we’re here to answer any questions you have about your injury case.

According to RAINN, as many as 93 percent of sexual abuse victims under the age of 18 know the abuser. Sexual predators look like anyone else, and sadly, they are often the people you trust most. Some of the occupations most often associated with child abuse include:

  • Priests
  • Pastors
  • Ministers
  • Rabbis
  • Imams
  • Clergy
  • Church officials
  • Youth group leaders
  • Deacons
  • School teachers
  • Music teachers
  • Dance instructors
  • Theater instructors
  • Boy Scout leaders and volunteers
  • Girl Scout leaders and volunteers
  • Coaches
  • Childcare providers
  • Babysitters

Sexual abuse can happen anywhere. Child molesters are opportunists and will enact their abuse anywhere they have access to or are alone with their victim. This includes:

  • Churches
  • Schools
  • Classrooms
  • Restrooms
  • Synagogues
  • Mosques
  • The victim’s home
  • The abuser’s home
  • On field trips
  • On religious retreats
  • On Camping trips
  • In a vehicle during a ride home

Several persons and parties may be responsible for child molestation — whether they committed the abuse themselves or they knew or should have known and did nothing to stop it. Here is a list of potential defendants in a child sex abuse civil lawsuit:

  • The abuser
  • Employers
  • Apartment communities
  • Property owners
  • Daycare providers
  • Landlords
  • Hotels/motels
  • Co-workers
  • Schools
  • Coaches
  • Babysitters
  • Parents/Stepparents
  • Teachers
  • Therapists
  • Youth clubs
  • Churches
  • Doctors

Child sexual abuse signs are often hard to spot. These signs include not only physical but also behavioral and emotional signs. Here are 10 warning signs of potential sexual child abuse:

  • Depression or post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Bleeding, bruising, or swelling in the genital area
  • Frequent urinary or yeast infections
  • Pain, itching, or burning in genital area
  • Changes in hygiene (bathing too little, or too often)
  • Changes in sleep habits, including nightmares or bedwetting
  • Self-harming or expression of suicidal thoughts
  • Trouble in school, including absences or drops in grades
  • Shies away or feels threatened by physical contact
  • Overly protective of siblings (assumes a caretaker role)

This is by no means an exhaustive list of sexual abuse signs.

Child sexual abuse is a crime that often goes undetected. You have the power to make an enormous, positive difference in a child’s life. Here are steps to take if you think a child is a victim of sexual abuse:

  • Recognize the signs, both physical and behavioral 
  • Talk to the child
    • Choose a safe space away from the person you may suspect of causing the abuse
    • Speak to the child in a casual, non-threatening tone to keep the child at ease
    • Talk to the child directly, using words that the child will understand
    • Avoid judgmental statements and questions and avoid blaming the child
    • Be reassuring to the child and let them know that you are concerned for them
  • Report it to authorities
    • Before reporting, tell the child you are going to talk to someone else who can help
    • Make sure the child is in a safe place, and if you are concerned about the child’s safety, be sure to let the authorities know

If you are not concerned that the parents are the ones causing harm, consult with them prior to reporting to authorities.

Our Practice Areas

Representing injured victims from across the United States.

No matter the injury or the accident, if you or a loved one were harmed due to the negligence of an individual or company, Thomas J. Henry is here to assist you.

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Contact Us for a Free Case Review

info@tjhlaw.com

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