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Sexually Assaulted and Developmentally Delayed Person ... The Victim No One Believes: Fact Sheet on Informed Consent Assessment and Evaluation Procedures for Persons With a Developmental Disability

NCJ Number
P S Blomberg
Date Published
8 pages
Guidelines for interviewing developmentally disabled persons who have been victims of sexual assault address informed consent issues and suggest interview techniques.
According to the introduction, the critical factor in assessing the ability to give or deny consent to sexual practices is the developmentally disabled person's ability to say no adequately. The fact sheet outlines elements to legally valid consent and details standards of competency that apply to developmentally disabled persons. Definitions are given for mental retardation, adaptive behavior, and rape under California law. Techniques for testing cognitive functions -- awareness, orientation, memory, perception, and learning -- are described. Guidelines to assessing the validity of the informed consent process conclude the fact sheet.