In Child Abuse cases, knowledge of Social Services' symbiotic relationship with police is an important fact you must know about. Generally, in any Child Abuse case, social services (a/k/a Department of Human Services) is involved. Whether a child is an alleged victim of sexual assault in Arapahoe or Jefferson County, social services will get a referral from police. If social services is the first to learn of the allegation, they will make the referral to police. These two organizations live off, and benefit from each other. Police want more cases to justify bigger budgets, and social services wants the same. Consequently, they love to work together and share everything concerning a case.
Even the smallest of cases will catch the eye of police or social services. Statistics are statistics, and that is why we see social services getting involved in minor spanking cases or those where a young child is found walking down the street in Lakewood or Aurora. I believe social services also takes cases they should not be involved in because they fear criticism if something later happens to a child who they came in contact with. This fear exists despite the fact social services could not possibly have predicted the later injury.
The symbiotic relationship between these two prosecutorial agencies goes beyond case referrals. Social services and police share reports and information with each other. If you give a statement to social services in Adams County, it is the equivalent of giving a statement to the Brighton police. So, if you are even remotely concerned about criminal prosecution (in every child abuse case you should be concerned), it is best to not give any statement to social services. You are required to receive a Miranda warning before talking to police, but don't have that same protection when talking with social services. Despite the absence of this Miranda warning, any statements you make will be used by district attorneys at trial, so be cautious and silent when approached by social services.
When you are contacted by police or social services in Denver, Jefferson, Adams, Arapahoe or Douglas counties concerning child abuse, sexual assault or any crime, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call us at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.