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Juveniles as Victims
Child Maltreatment
Q: What are the characteristics of child maltreatment victims?
A: In 2016, the majority of victims experienced neglect (75%), were white (45%), female (51%), and age 3 or under (35%).

Characteristics of child maltreatment victims, 2016

Estimated number of unique victims 676,000
 
Victimization rate* 9.1
 
Age
0 to 3
35%
4 to 7
24%
8 to 11
19%
12 to 15
16%
16 to 17
6%
 
Gender
Male
49%
Female
51%
 
Race/ethnicity
White
45%
Black
21%
Hispanic
22%
American Indian/Alaskan Native
1%
Asian/Pacific Islander
1%
Multiple race
5%
Unknown/missing
5%
 
Maltreatment type**
Neglect
75%
Physical abuse
18%
Sexual abuse
9%
Psychological maltreatment
6%
Medical neglect
2%
Other abuse
7%
Unknown/missing
<1%
 
Victim relationship to perpetrator***
Parent
92%
  Mother only
40%
  Father only
22%
  Mother and father
21%
  Mother, father, and other nonparent
1%
  Mother and other nonparent
7%
  Father and other nonparent
1%
Relative
5%
Unmarried partner of parent
3%
Other nonparent****
2%
Professional*****
1%
Other/unknown
6%

Notes: *Rate is per 1,000 children under 18 in the U.S. population.
**A child may have been the victim of more than one type of maltreatment, therefore, the total may equal more than 100%.
***A child may have up to three perpetrators, therefore the total may equal more than 100%.
****Other nonparent includes friends and neighbors, legal guardians, more than one non-parental perpetrators.
*****Professional includes adults who care for children as part of their employment duties, such as child daycare providers, foster parents (non-relative), and group home staff, as well as other professionals.
Percentages are based on the unique count of child victims and should not be compared to years prior to 2010. This table is based on sample data reported by a varying number of states.

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  • More than one-third of maltreatment victims in 2016 were infants or toddlers ages 03.
  • Females made up just over half (51%) of all maltreatment victims in 2016.
  • White children accounted for 45% of all victims, more than one-fifth were black (21%) or Hispanic (22%).
  • Neglect (75%) was the most common form of maltreatment in 2016.
  • An estimated 1,750 children died as the result of maltreatment in 2016.

Internet citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available: https://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/victims/qa02102.asp?qaDate=2016. Released on June 01, 2018.

Data Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Children, Youth, and Families. Child Maltreatment 2016. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office.

 

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