Sexual Abuse

"Sexual abuse" is defined as the commission of a sexual offense with or to a child pursuant to Iowa Code chapter 709, Iowa Code section 726.2, or Iowa Code section 728.12, subsection 1, as a result of the acts or omissions of the person responsible for the care of the child or of a person who resides in a home with the child.

Notwithstanding Iowa Code section 702.5, the commission of a sexual offense under this paragraph includes any sexual offense referred to in this paragraph with or to a person under the age of 18 years.

There are several sub-categories of sexual abuse:

  • First degree sexual abuse
  • Second degree sexual abuse
  • Third degree sexual abuse
  • Lascivious acts with a child
  • Indecent exposure
  • Assault with intent to commit sexual abuse
  • Indecent contact with a child
  • Lascivious conduct with a minor
  • Incest
  • Sexual exploitation by a counselor, therapist, or school employee
  • Sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Sexual misconduct with juveniles
  • Invasion of Privacy – Nudity

Behavioral indicators of sexual abuse could include things such as excessive knowledge of sexual matters beyond their normal developmental age or seductiveness. Physical indicators of sexual abuse could include things such as bruised or bleeding genitalia, venereal disease, or even pregnancy.

There are specific physical examination procedures used in child abuse. For instance, in the evaluation of sexual abuse, the colposcope provides for a taped copy of that examination. That copy alleviates the need then for the child to be subjected to further examinations.

Note: What most people think of as an issue of "neglect" is covered under the child abuse category of "denial of critical care."