Elder Victims of Sexual Abuse

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June 1, 2011

Although elder abuse is a topic familiar to many Americans, elder sexual abuse remains often overlooked—despite its prevalence and the damage it can cause. Elder sexual abuse is a distinct form of victimization in which victims’ age and health further complicate the particular challenges that every sexual abuse/assault case presents for the courts. This curriculum explores the research on elder sexual abuse and its implications for civil and criminal courts.

Participants in this curriculum will learn to:

  • Identify the types of elder sexual abuse and those who are at highest risk for abuse
  • Explain how victim impact in elder sexual abuses cases differs from younger victims
  • Recognize typical characteristics of sex offenders who target elders
  • Help elders describe their experiences and gain access to the courts
  • Know key questions to assess whether consent was present
  • Minimize jury bias in elder sexual abuse cases
  • Sentence elder sexual abuse offenders appropriately
  • Identify resources to improve courts’ handling of elder sexual abuse cases

NJEP’s curriculum is available at no charge for a variety of uses: it can be utilized as the basis for in-person trainings and webinars or reviewed by individuals online. The curriculum can be adapted to local laws and practices 

The curriculum consists of a faculty manual for teachers, a Power Point presentation with suggested commentary, exercises for participants, and handouts for participants. 

Download the Entire Module as a Single .zip File

Faculty Manual


PowerPoint Slides with Suggested Commentary 


The download link above will download the PDF version of this presentation. To download the PowerPoint file, click here.

Case Study Exercise


Participant Handouts

Professor Ann Burgess & Jill Hoexter, Esq. Practical Issues: Preparing and Prosecuting Elder Sexual Assault Cases


Holly Ramsey-Klawsnik, PhD., Sexual Violence in Later Life, Fact Sheet, Bulletin and Technical Assistance Guide for Advocates, National Sexual Violence Resource Center

Graphics for Reproducing this Module (.zip)

  • Violence Against Women and Girls
  • National Judicial Education Program

Resource Type: