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Victim Resources

Reporting Child Abuse

Call the County Social Services Department's Child Protective Services Child Abuse Hotline at (858) 560-2191 or (800) 344-6000 to report situations in which you suspect that a child has been abused or appears to be at risk of being abused. Your report will be investigated and steps will be taken to protect the child and preserve the family unit. The SDPD will be informed if abuse is involved. If you know that abuse has occurred, you should call SDPD directly at (619) 531-2000 or (858) 484-3154. If the abuse is in progress you should call 911. Officers will investigate, take steps to protect the victim and prosecute the abuser, and inform the County Social Service Department.

The following are some signs of child abuse:

  • Frequent or unexplained injuries
  • Injuries that appear to have a pattern such as marks from a hand or belt
  • Sexual language, knowledge, interest, or behavior beyond what is normal for the child's age
  • Specific comments or complaints about abuse
  • Lack of basic needs for food, clothing, and medical care
  • Poor hygiene
  • Sudden decline in school performance or frequent truancy
  • Lack of supervision for long periods of time
  • Excessively withdrawn, fearful, or anxious about doing something wrong
  • Always watchful and on alert as if waiting from something bad to happen
  • Shies away from touches, flinches at sudden movements, or seems afraid to go home

And for sexual exploitation:

  • Changes in behavior, extreme mood swings, withdrawal, fearfulness, and excessive crying
  • Bed-wetting, nightmares, fear of going to bed, or other sleep disturbances
  • Avoids undressing or wears extra layers of clothing
  • Acting out inappropriate sexual activity or showing unusual interest in sexual matters
  • Sudden acting our of feelings or aggression, rebellious behavior
  • Regression to infantile behavior
  • Acts inappropriately adult, e.g., taking care of other children
  • Pain, itching, bleeding, fluid, or rawness in private areas
  • Fear a certain places, people, or activities, especially being alone with certain people