The Justice System for Juvenile Victims: A Comprehensive Model of Case Flow

David Finkelhor, Theodore P. Cross, Elise N. Cantor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article proposes the idea that there is a de facto juvenile victim justice system, a complex set of agencies and institutions that responds to juvenile victims of crime and violence, including child maltreatment and conventional crime. The article offers a schematic model of that system and tries to quantify the case flow through its various components, that is, the likelihood that given certain actions (e.g., a substantiated finding of maltreatment), other actions will follow (e.g., services be provided). The model also highlights the activities of the system most likely to have consequential effects on victims. We argue that more professionals are needed who understand the system in its entirety, not just their own agency role, and who can help guide victims, families, and other professionals through its complexities. More efforts are also needed to integrate and rationalize the system, particularly through information exchange among its components.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-102
Number of pages20
JournalTrauma, Violence, & Abuse
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • child abuse
  • child maltreatment
  • crime
  • sexual abuse
  • sexual assault

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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