SCAN’s Child Advocacy Center (CAC) has teamed up with the Richmond Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) unit.  SCAN is the only nonprofit involved in this.

“SCAN was chosen because of our advocacy expertise,” CAC Coordinator Ian Danielsen said. “Understanding internet crimes is now a part of best practices when advocating for children’s safety and we’ve already been involved in investigations relating to internet crimes.”

The CAC’s Multidisciplinary Teams (MDTs) in Chesterfield, Henrico, Louisa and Richmond collaborate in their localities to investigate and prosecute cases of child abuse. In each locality, there are representatives on each MDT from law enforcement, commonwealth’s attorneys offices, departments of social services, other advocacy groups, and medical and mental health providers. Working to collaborate with technology crime investigators in internet crimes cases has become important.

Ian said that, for example, a child may have been identified in images under investigation in an internet crimes case. The child might then need to be interviewed by the CAC’s forensic interviewers and collaboration becomes essential to the case.

Hopefully, said Ian, this increased level of coordinated services will help the CAC stay on top of the latest protocol and technology to help keep children safe. Case Manager Briana Valentino is now participating in a work group to explore and create protocols for how all Child Advocacy Centers and internet crime groups would interact to ensure the best treatment and outcomes for children.

The CAC also helps raise awareness to prevent internet crimes against children through its child abuse and neglect trainings and Stewards of Children child sexual abuse prevention trainings.

 

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