Asked in Criminal Law for Massachusetts

Q: I suspect that my sister is being molested by her stepfather, she has told me that he tries to touch her private areas

How can I report the guy cause I fear for my sister's safety and my mom won't believe my sister

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1 Lawyer Answer
Lissa McKinney
Lissa McKinney
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Acton, MA
  • Licensed in Massachusetts

A: You can alert any mandatory reporter, who is obliged to notify DCF and/or the police. That includes doctors, nurses, teachers, daycare workers, therapists of any kind, social workers, and many more. However, if this happens they may ask your sister and depending on her age the directness may make her cautious about disclosing this, especially if she is worried her mom wont believe her or that the step dad may become violent. Maybe there are other ways you can encourage and support her to report this as well, and help her prepare to do so as soon as possible before she comes to harm or expereinces trauma or PTSD or other hallmarks of abuse. I have litigated on both sides of abuse allegations, and it is important that the questioning be handled by trained professionals-not you. It is equally important that the step dad's behavior be stopped. If it is possible for you to take your sister out for an afternoon and take her to a doctor privately that could help; or to the police. You can also report this to her school principal or her pediatrician if you know who that is.

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