Child torture as a form of child abuse

Barbara L. Knox, Suzanne P. Starling, Kenneth W. Feldman, Nancy D Kellogg, Lori D. Frasier, Suzanna L. Tiapula

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper describes clinical findings and case characteristics of children who are victims of severe and multiple forms of abuse; and proposes clinical criteria that indicate child abuse by torture. Medical records, investigation records, and transcripts of testimony regarding a nonconsecutive case series of 28 children with evidence of physical abuse, neglect, and psychological maltreatment, such as terrorizing and isolation, were reviewed for types of injuries, duration of maltreatment, medical and physical neglect, social and family history, and history of prior Child Protective Services (CPS) involvement. The median age was 7.5 years (9 months to 14.3 years). Thirty-six percent died. Duration of abuse ranged from 3.5 months to 8 years (median 3 years) Ninety-three percent of children were beaten and exhibited cutaneous injury; 21 % had fractures. There were 25 victims of isolation (89 %), as well as 61 % who were physically restrained and 89 % who were restricted from food or water. All of the children were victims of psychological maltreatment; 75%were terrorized through threats of harm or death to themselves or loved ones and 54 % were degraded and/or rejected by caregivers. Nearly all children were medically neglected. Half had a history of prior referrals to CPS. The children in this case series were physically abused, isolated, deprived of basic necessities, terrorized, and neglected. We define child torture as a longitudinal experience characterized by at least two physical assaults or one extended assault, two or more forms of psychological maltreatment, and neglect resulting in prolonged suffering, permanent disfigurement or dysfunction, or death.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-49
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Child and Adolescent Trauma
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Fingerprint

Torture
Child Abuse
Psychology
Wounds and Injuries
Psychological Stress
Caregivers
Medical Records
Referral and Consultation
Food
Skin
Water

Keywords

  • Neglect
  • Non-accidental trauma
  • Physical abuse
  • Psychologicalmal treatment
  • Starvation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine

Cite this

Knox, B. L., Starling, S. P., Feldman, K. W., Kellogg, N. D., Frasier, L. D., & Tiapula, S. L. (2014). Child torture as a form of child abuse. Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma, 7(1), 37-49. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40653-014-0009-9

Child torture as a form of child abuse. / Knox, Barbara L.; Starling, Suzanne P.; Feldman, Kenneth W.; Kellogg, Nancy D; Frasier, Lori D.; Tiapula, Suzanna L.

In: Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma, Vol. 7, No. 1, 2014, p. 37-49.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Knox, BL, Starling, SP, Feldman, KW, Kellogg, ND, Frasier, LD & Tiapula, SL 2014, 'Child torture as a form of child abuse', Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 37-49. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40653-014-0009-9
Knox, Barbara L. ; Starling, Suzanne P. ; Feldman, Kenneth W. ; Kellogg, Nancy D ; Frasier, Lori D. ; Tiapula, Suzanna L. / Child torture as a form of child abuse. In: Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma. 2014 ; Vol. 7, No. 1. pp. 37-49.
@article{7c71d01883774b94acd1df1881303b04,
title = "Child torture as a form of child abuse",
abstract = "This paper describes clinical findings and case characteristics of children who are victims of severe and multiple forms of abuse; and proposes clinical criteria that indicate child abuse by torture. Medical records, investigation records, and transcripts of testimony regarding a nonconsecutive case series of 28 children with evidence of physical abuse, neglect, and psychological maltreatment, such as terrorizing and isolation, were reviewed for types of injuries, duration of maltreatment, medical and physical neglect, social and family history, and history of prior Child Protective Services (CPS) involvement. The median age was 7.5 years (9 months to 14.3 years). Thirty-six percent died. Duration of abuse ranged from 3.5 months to 8 years (median 3 years) Ninety-three percent of children were beaten and exhibited cutaneous injury; 21 {\%} had fractures. There were 25 victims of isolation (89 {\%}), as well as 61 {\%} who were physically restrained and 89 {\%} who were restricted from food or water. All of the children were victims of psychological maltreatment; 75{\%}were terrorized through threats of harm or death to themselves or loved ones and 54 {\%} were degraded and/or rejected by caregivers. Nearly all children were medically neglected. Half had a history of prior referrals to CPS. The children in this case series were physically abused, isolated, deprived of basic necessities, terrorized, and neglected. We define child torture as a longitudinal experience characterized by at least two physical assaults or one extended assault, two or more forms of psychological maltreatment, and neglect resulting in prolonged suffering, permanent disfigurement or dysfunction, or death.",
keywords = "Neglect, Non-accidental trauma, Physical abuse, Psychologicalmal treatment, Starvation",
author = "Knox, {Barbara L.} and Starling, {Suzanne P.} and Feldman, {Kenneth W.} and Kellogg, {Nancy D} and Frasier, {Lori D.} and Tiapula, {Suzanna L.}",
year = "2014",
doi = "10.1007/s40653-014-0009-9",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "7",
pages = "37--49",
journal = "Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma",
issn = "1936-1521",
publisher = "Taylor and Francis Ltd.",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Child torture as a form of child abuse

AU - Knox, Barbara L.

AU - Starling, Suzanne P.

AU - Feldman, Kenneth W.

AU - Kellogg, Nancy D

AU - Frasier, Lori D.

AU - Tiapula, Suzanna L.

PY - 2014

Y1 - 2014

N2 - This paper describes clinical findings and case characteristics of children who are victims of severe and multiple forms of abuse; and proposes clinical criteria that indicate child abuse by torture. Medical records, investigation records, and transcripts of testimony regarding a nonconsecutive case series of 28 children with evidence of physical abuse, neglect, and psychological maltreatment, such as terrorizing and isolation, were reviewed for types of injuries, duration of maltreatment, medical and physical neglect, social and family history, and history of prior Child Protective Services (CPS) involvement. The median age was 7.5 years (9 months to 14.3 years). Thirty-six percent died. Duration of abuse ranged from 3.5 months to 8 years (median 3 years) Ninety-three percent of children were beaten and exhibited cutaneous injury; 21 % had fractures. There were 25 victims of isolation (89 %), as well as 61 % who were physically restrained and 89 % who were restricted from food or water. All of the children were victims of psychological maltreatment; 75%were terrorized through threats of harm or death to themselves or loved ones and 54 % were degraded and/or rejected by caregivers. Nearly all children were medically neglected. Half had a history of prior referrals to CPS. The children in this case series were physically abused, isolated, deprived of basic necessities, terrorized, and neglected. We define child torture as a longitudinal experience characterized by at least two physical assaults or one extended assault, two or more forms of psychological maltreatment, and neglect resulting in prolonged suffering, permanent disfigurement or dysfunction, or death.

AB - This paper describes clinical findings and case characteristics of children who are victims of severe and multiple forms of abuse; and proposes clinical criteria that indicate child abuse by torture. Medical records, investigation records, and transcripts of testimony regarding a nonconsecutive case series of 28 children with evidence of physical abuse, neglect, and psychological maltreatment, such as terrorizing and isolation, were reviewed for types of injuries, duration of maltreatment, medical and physical neglect, social and family history, and history of prior Child Protective Services (CPS) involvement. The median age was 7.5 years (9 months to 14.3 years). Thirty-six percent died. Duration of abuse ranged from 3.5 months to 8 years (median 3 years) Ninety-three percent of children were beaten and exhibited cutaneous injury; 21 % had fractures. There were 25 victims of isolation (89 %), as well as 61 % who were physically restrained and 89 % who were restricted from food or water. All of the children were victims of psychological maltreatment; 75%were terrorized through threats of harm or death to themselves or loved ones and 54 % were degraded and/or rejected by caregivers. Nearly all children were medically neglected. Half had a history of prior referrals to CPS. The children in this case series were physically abused, isolated, deprived of basic necessities, terrorized, and neglected. We define child torture as a longitudinal experience characterized by at least two physical assaults or one extended assault, two or more forms of psychological maltreatment, and neglect resulting in prolonged suffering, permanent disfigurement or dysfunction, or death.

KW - Neglect

KW - Non-accidental trauma

KW - Physical abuse

KW - Psychologicalmal treatment

KW - Starvation

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84901797542&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84901797542&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s40653-014-0009-9

DO - 10.1007/s40653-014-0009-9

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84901797542

VL - 7

SP - 37

EP - 49

JO - Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma

JF - Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma

SN - 1936-1521

IS - 1

ER -