An 8-year-old girl was stripped naked and searched by Virginia Department of Corrections staff after she was led to believe refusal would result in not being allowed to see her father.
“That’s outrageous,” said Daniel Macallair, executive director of the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice. “It’s generally regarded in the criminal justice field that you do not strip search young children. … I mean most adults, certainly most adults who work in the field of child welfare would know better, that this is an act of child abuse.”
The strip search has haunted the girl, who already suffered from bipolar disorder, depression and ADHD, said her mother.
“She’s a minor, she’s a girl. She was traumatized,” her mother said. “She gets emotional, she will break down.”
She’s missed school because of it, her mother said.
Just after the visit, the girl texted her mom in shock.
“Hey Mom, am so mad the jail had to strip me with all of my clothes off this doesn’t make no sinc (sic)” the girl texted.
“Did they make you take all of your clothes off,” her mother texted back just before calling her daughter.
“Yes all of my clothes off,” she responded.