Betsy Reason for the Indianapolis Star:
Before Susie’s Place opened, when a report came in to the Department of Child Services about two siblings being abused, an investigation was completed by agency and law-enforcement officials. But the interviews didn’t gather enough information for officials to intervene.
Two years later, a younger child in the same family made a claim of abuse. This time, the Avon-based child advocacy center was in existence, and a team made up of police detectives, prosecutors, DCS workers, victim advocates and child forensic interviewers was notified immediately to come together for the children’s interviews at Susie’s Place.
The work done at the center ensured that the children were not further victimized. They were placed with relatives, where they continue to live, and the alleged offender was convicted by a jury.
“It’s the way we ask questions,” said Emily Perry, executive director of Susie’s Place. “It’s not what we ask, but how we ask.”