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Sexual abuse victims that suffered while incarcerated at a New Hampshire youth detention center (YDC) can seek justice and compensation!

Sexual abuse victims that suffered while incarcerated at a New Hampshire youth detention center (YDC) can seek justice and compensation!

A New Hampshire House Bill, designated as HB1677-FN, has established a fund to compensate victims of sex abuse by staff members of the state’s youth detention centers.

The New Hampshire youth detention centers allegedly involved include:

  • Philbrook School
  • Tobey Special Education School
  • State Industrial School
  • Youth Services Center


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More details on the New Hampshire youth detention centers involved in alleged sex abuses


According to the former child residents of the Youth Development Center that are suing the state of New Hampshire, between 1960 and 2018, incarcerated youths were beaten, raped, and tortured by state staff members–and these stories of abuse have stayed shielded from the public for decades.

Whispers of the happenings inside the institution dormitories came in pieces–problem employees that were rarely terminated, slipshod investigations that might have highlighted the center’s disturbing culture but did very little to curb mistreatment of child teen inmates.

More than 500 men and women have so far come forward with allegations of sexual or physical abuse at the hands of staff, a pattern of mistreatment spanning six decades. 

At least 150 staffers have so far been implicated by alleged victims, according to court filings and attorneys for the plaintiffs.

The breadth of wrongdoing, experts say, has quietly approached or exceeded some of the country’s most high-profile child sexual abuse scandals.

Many who spent time there depict New Hampshire’s YDCs as houses of horrors, including: 

  • Rampant sexual abuse by rogue staffers;
  • Beatings so severe they eventually broke bones;
  • Residents being forced by staff to fight each other for food;
  • Solitary confinement stays that stretched for months; and,
  • Exposure to the kind of violence that leaves lasting psychological damage.

Among those who have bravely come forward include a New Hampshire state representative who revealed in an interview that he was also sexually assaulted by a staff member during his time as a teen at the facility.

“It was essentially a youth prison,” said Cody Belanger, a 27-year-old Republican, who was detained at one of the YDCs at the age of 13.

“We felt that we weren’t worth anything, that they weren’t even going to bother listening to our concerns.”

More details of the New Hampshire House Bill (HB1677-FN) established for compensating YDC sex abuse victims.


Victims seeking justice for the sexual abuse they suffered at the hands of New Hampshire youth detention center employees have a couple of different options for potential compensation.

The New Hampshire State Senate has passed a bill to create a system designed to settle the growing number of youth detention center abuse cases–a bill that would create a $100 million settlement fund for the hundreds of people who’ve claimed they were sexually and/or physically abused as children while incarcerated at the state’s former Youth Development Center.

But this option has a some caps on claims that limit the state’s accountability, including:

  • $150,000 for physical abuse;
  • $1.5 million for sexual abuse; and,
  • the exclusion of emotional abuse.

Also under the bill, victims cannot file a claim or know what the state will offer them until after they’ve waived their right to file a lawsuit.

The litigation process is described as "a more victim-centered and trauma-informed process than traditional litigation," according to the attorney general's office.

"No victim is required to use this process, but it is my hope that this bill will provide an avenue for much-needed healing and compensation for many of these victims," Attorney General John Formella said in a statement.

A New Hampshire Department of Justice spokesman issued a statement that maintained, "There will still remain a remedy for victims of types of abuse not covered by this bill.

“The Attorney General’s Office will retain the ability to settle those claims within the traditional settlement authority the AG is afforded under New Hampshire law.”

The Consumer Justice Action team encourages sexual abuse victims that suffered while incarcerated at a New Hampshire youth detention center (YDC) to come forward for a free, private case evaluation for potential justice and compensation!

Our network of attorneys are ready to support you.


Answer a brief, private online questionnaire that asks for key details of the experience


Have the case evaluated by a legal team free of charge without any obligation to file


Depending on the circumstances, the case could be filed for potential compensation

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