Oct. 26, 2011

“Many of the investigators in the Little Rascals case (seem to have been) poised to find allegations of sexual abuse.

“The seeds of this case may have been sown in the spring of 1988, months before the first allegations of child sexual abuse…. At a 3-day conference in the Outer Banks town of Kill Devil Hills, law enforcement and social services workers convened to learn about the dangers of child molesters operating day-care facilities.

“The seminar was co-sponsored by a counseling group and assisted by Judy Abbott, a social worker who would become one of the most active therapists for the child victims in this case. The featured speaker was Ann Burgess, editor of the book ‘Child Pornography and Sex Rings’ (1984).

“Also attending were H. P. Williams, who would co-prosecute the case, and Brenda Toppin, the Edenton police officer who was first to interview most of the children in the case and to advise parents of their abuse.”

– From “Jeopardy in the Courtroom: A Scientific Analysis of Children’s 
Testimony” by Stephen J. Ceci and Maggie Bruck (1995)