Intellectually Disabled Victims of Sexual Abuse in the Criminal Justice System


People with intellectual disabilities face an exceptionally high risk of being victims of sexual abuse and thereby becoming involved in the criminal justice system. Coping effectively with this system is enough of a challenge for those without disability, but it is far more difficult for the intellectually disabled. As a result, greater attention needs to be paid to their needs. From the opposite perspective, dealing with people with intellectual disabilities is a challenge for experts in forensic and criminal law practice. This short report presents the background, design, and preliminary findings of a study examining how far the police, judges, prosecutors, forensic-psychiatric experts, forensic-psychological experts, and social workers are able to ensure that victims with intellectual disabilities experience procedural fairness by taking their particular needs into account in everyday criminal proceedings.

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Niehaus, S. , Krüger, P. & Schmitz, S. (2013). Intellectually Disabled Victims of Sexual Abuse in the Criminal Justice System. Psychology, 4, 374-379. doi: 10.4236/psych.2013.43A054.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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