A 13-year-old Clarendon child, who is now pregnant, has alleged being raped twice last year, including by her stepfather.
The teen said that last July, she went to a property belonging to a relative, where there is an unoccupied house, to fetch water. She said that while there, she was approached by her stepfather who asked her for sex.
The child said she declined the request and went to an upstairs section of the house where her stepfather came, pushed her down on an old settee, and raped her, even as she cried and begged him to stop.
The child said that a month later, while tending to chores at the same relative's house, she was again raped, this time by her sister's boyfriend. Detectives attached to the Clarendon police are currently probing the case. Meanwhile, Children's Advocate Diahann Gordon Harrison told the media that it is not uncommon for a person to fall victim to a crime multiple times.
"There is a thing called poly-victimisation that basically says once you have somebody who has been a victim of sexual violence, they become at increased or heightened risk to again fall prey to the same sexual violence," she said. Research suggest that children who are poly-victims develop mental health and behavioural issues, and do poorly academically.
Gordon Harrison said that Clarendon is one parish of grave concern, citing incidence of sexual violence against children as "it does come up on the radar quite a bit".
The Child Protection and Family Services Agency reports that the overall number of child abuse cases in Clarendon has surged during the pandemic. Two cases of rape were reported in the parish between January 1 and February 24, 2021. The figure is 78 per cent less than the corresponding period for 2020.