At the very heart of Children’s Advocacy Center of Van Zandt County is the forensic interview. A forensic interview of a child is a developmentally sensitive and legally sound method of gathering factual information regarding allegations of abuse and/or exposure to violence.
The interview is conducted by a neutral professional utilizing research and practice informed techniques as part of a larger investigative process. This is the first step in the investigation of a child abuse case and, in turn, the first step to healing for the child.
The purpose of a forensic interview in a children’s advocacy center is to obtain a statement from a child in a developmentally and culturally sensitive, unbiased and fact-finding manner that will support accurate and fair decision making by the involved MDT in the criminal justice and child protection systems.
Our function is to serve as the bridge between the child affected by abuse and the prosecution team. This is done by facilitating a safe, child-friendly forensic interview that promotes the mental stability and healing of the child affected by abuse and that maintains the integrity of the investigation by Law Enforcement and DFPS/CPS investigators.