A Call for Witnesses: Survivors of Samuel Caffey
Former Mason County school counselor Samuel Caffey was arrested on June 2, 2023, on multiple sexual assault allegations. Caffey was employed by the Shelton School District and worked at Shelton High School; however, following the charges, he is no longer employed by the district.
PCVA is currently investigating the allegations against Caffey. If you or someone you know has any information that could help in these efforts, please contact us.
This article provides frequently asked questions about Caffey, sexual abuse and how PCVA’s experienced sexual abuse lawyers can help.
What are the charges against Samuel Caffey?
The Mason County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with the Shelton School District and the Shelton Police Department, investigated the case, leading to the arrest of Caffey at his home. He was booked into the Mason County Jail on the following charges:
- Rape of a child 3
- Child Molestation 3
- Sexual Misconduct with a Minor 1
- Delivery of a Controlled Substance
- Possession of Depictions of a Minor Engaged in Sexually Explicit Conduct
Is there any additional information about Samuel Caffey’s accusations at this time?
In April, a 15-year-old girl was reported missing to the Mason County Sheriff’s Office. The girl’s parents ended up finding the missing student about a half mile from their home in the company of Caffey. Both Caffey and the minor were interviewed by authorities at the time, but there was not enough evidence to press charges.
Detectives continued their investigation over the next two months. Once the sheriff’s office contacted Shelton High School, where Caffey was employed as a counselor, the school placed him on administrative leave. The investigation revealed new allegations of improper conduct involving female students, leading to the arrest of Caffey at his home.
How does sexual abuse occur in schools?
While sexual abuse can happen anywhere on the school grounds or during school events, the National Education Association notes student-on-student sexual assault and harassment occurs most frequently in school bathrooms, school playgrounds and in the back of school buses. The NEA also cited an Associated Press analysis of federal crime data and noted that, for every adult-on-child sexual assault, there were seven assaults by students on other students.
What are the signs of sexual abuse among minors?
The signs of sexual abuse will vary depending on the minor’s age and can present themselves physically, behaviorally or emotionally. While there may be other causes behind some signs of abuse, it is important to trust your gut. Addressing sexual abuse can be painful, but the sooner you take action, the better off the minor in your care will be.
Among minors, warning signs can be difficult to spot, but include the following:
- Evidence of trauma to the genital area
- Sudden regression to old habits such as bed-wetting or thumb sucking
- Excessive knowledge of sexual topics
- Overly compliant behavior
- Spending an excessive amount of time alone
- Changed eating habits
- Reduced self-esteem
- Lost interest in daily activities
- Sudden fear of being away from primary caregivers
Signs that an adult may be grooming a minor for future abuse include:
- Fails to respect boundaries
- Tries to be a child’s friend rather than an adult role model / does not seem to have an age-appropriate relationship.
- Spends time alone with a child outside of their role in the child’s life
- Gives gifts without reason
What is the statute of limitations in Washington State for child sex abuse?
In Washington State, a special statute of limitations allows many victims of childhood sexual abuse to file lawsuits for the abuse they suffered many years later, even as adults. The law recognizes that survivors of childhood sexual abuse may not realize or appreciate how the sexual abuse harmed them until much later in life. If you were sexually abused, please contact us so that we can confidentially explain your legal options.
How PCVA Can Help
Our nationally recognized attorneys have represented thousands of sexual abuse survivors, helping them achieve justice by holding the institutions that failed to protect them accountable and recovering hundreds of millions of dollars in damages on their behalf. Our attorneys have been involved in some of the most complicated and concerning sexual abuse cases in the country and are often consulted by other law firms for guidance and expertise when representing sexual abuse survivors.
If you have information about Samuel Caffey and allegations of sexual abuse, our attorneys are here to listen and help. Please reach out to one of our experienced lawyers by completing our online form or calling us at (253) 948-3199 or (206) 536-2850. All conversations are completely confidential.
Should I file a sex abuse lawsuit?
The decision to file a civil lawsuit over damages caused by sexual abuse is a personal one, and several factors must be considered. A lawsuit will allow you to expose the wrongs of your perpetrator and potentially receive financial compensation for your pain. However, you will have to provide information about the trauma you experienced as well as other aspects of your personal life.
PCVA’s sexual abuse attorneys are trained in trauma-informed counsel. This means that to prevent re-traumatization, we have undergone professional training on how to work with individuals who have been subjected to trauma. When you work with us, know that you are working with an advocate who represents you with the utmost empathy and care.
Our Case Results
PCVA alone has handled numerous cases of student sexual abuse. Here are links to a few examples:
- $4.25M Settlement in Sexual Assault Case Against Issaquah School District
- $4.2M Settlement Reached in Coach Sexual Abuse Case Against University Place School District
- $3M Settlement in Coach Sexual Abuse Case Against Seattle Public Schools
- $2.25M Settlement for Sexual Abuse at Rainier School
- $2M Settlement for Sexual Abuse of 10 Juveniles at Green Hill School
- $500K Settlement for Sexual Abuse at Bethel High School
- $333K Settlement for Sexual Abuse Against Walla Walla School District