Die seksueel gemolesteerde kindergetuie se ervaring van die hofvoorbereidingsproses van die Blue Downs hof / Chantell Wolmarans
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The legal system is responsible for the prosecution of an accused of sexual abuse of a child. The prosecution process is a complicated and an adult-orientated area. In South Africa sexual abuse of children is noticeably high. The sexual abuse of a child is traumatic and an intimidating experience for the child. The child is usually the only/main witness in a sexual abuse case. The child's testimony is the main aspect in the guilty ruling of an accused. Courts must apply special measures for child witnesses to testify optimally in court. Special measures include a court preparation process of the child witness. This study investigated the experience of the child witness of the court preparation process of Blue Downs court. The current programme was also described, and discussed in terms of current best practice programmes as described in literature. This study was based on a case study. The sexually abused child witness, the child's parent, the court preparation officer as well as the senior state prosecutor were interviewed. The most important findings of the study were that the court preparations process of Blue Downs court is successful and appropriated structured. The parent as well as the child experienced the programme as positive, and their anxiety levels were hereby lowered. A few training needs for court preparation officers, were identified. Court preparation processes need ongoing evaluation, to perform at its best and to be successfu1. Adjustments, such as more intensive training of the court preparation officers, are necessary to improve the process.
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