FULTON, NY – Executive Director of the Child Advocacy Center of Oswego County Karrie Damm announced that Aimee May has been named the agency’s forensic investigator and Sarah Weigelt is the new CAC office manager.
A former sergeant with the Fulton Police Department, May served 21 years on the police force, the last 7 of which were as an investigator.
“I am pleased to welcome Aimee to our staff,” said Damm. “We at the CAC have known Aimee for a number of years and have always been impressed with the work she has done with the Fulton Police Department and as a part of our Multi-Disciplinary Team.”
Having been a part of the CAC’s Multi-Disciplinary Team May is very familiar with the work of the CAC and the types of cases the agency handles.
“I enjoy this type of work and admire what the CAC does,” sad May. “When I joined the Fulton Police Department Oswego County did not have a CAC. It was not unusual for road patrol officers to handle child abuse cases and conduct their own investigation. It was common to handle a case from start to finish. Having the CAC makes the investigation process much more efficient.”
As the CAC’s forensic investigator May brings a neutral and unbiased approach to the investigations. With no preconceived notions or opinions May is able to focus on just obtaining the facts.
“I’m confident in my ability to interview children,” said May. “I am able to make them feel comfortable in a very uncomfortable situation discussing a very difficult topic. Every child is different. While some are more mature and easy to talk with others may be more difficult, however children are very intuitive. If I’m comfortable conducting the interview they pick up on that and it helps them feel comfortable as well.”
The addition of May to the CAC staff is a direct result of the agency moving into its new larger facility.
“Our goal when we moved to our new location at 163 S. First St. in Fulton was to expand upon the services we offer and create a ‘one-stop’ location so that children would only have to tell their story once,” explained Damm. “Having children repeat their story again and again to healthcare professionals, legal authorities, investigators, and counselors is very stressful. With our new facility we are able to house these individuals on site so that the child only has to tell their story once rather than reliving the trauma each time the story is told.”
“I’m thrilled to be involved with the CAC and being part of something that is so much better for the child,” added May. “Children can heal, but they may never be the same. Abuse can lead to many other problems. The work that is done at the CAC and the support that the counselors and advocates provide can help alleviate that. I am proud to be with the CAC and know that I am part of the solution and helping victims of child abuse overcome their trauma and get their lives back on track.”
Weigelt, who was with Oswego Health for several years, previously worked as the organization’s clinical administrative assistant, director of Auxiliary and Volunteer Services, and most recently as the director for Springside at Seneca Hill.
At the CAC Weigelt will be responsible for the day to day operation of the office as well as involvement with fundraising events, medical billing, processing donations and grants, and serving as a conduit between CAC staff and the agency’s partners.
“The work that the CAC does is very interesting to me,” said Weigelt. “After speaking with Karrie I knew I wanted to be part of it. She and the staff do a tremendous job in providing much needed services to children that have suffered physical or sexual abuse. The work they do to help child abuse victims cope with their lives after the fact is amazing. Working at the CAC is a bit of a departure from what I have previously done but it is what I like doing best…being part of a team. It’s rewarding to know that I am part of an agency that serves such a vital role in the health of our community.”
“We’re excited that Sarah chose to join our staff,” said Damm. “As the office backbone Sarah will provide support to the staff and allow me to focus on ensuring that our collaboration with our Multi-Disciplinary Team produces positive outcomes for children and the families that we serve.”
Located at 163 S. First St., Fulton, the CAC is a non-profit organization that works hand-in-hand with local law enforcement, prosecution, child protective services, medical providers, mental health providers, and victim advocacy professionals in Oswego County to protect and serve child victims of sexual and physical abuse.
In 2017 the CAC served 540 children, provided 4,500 therapy sessions, and forensically investigated more than 300 cases.
For more information on the Child Advocacy Center of Oswego County, call 315-592-4453 or visit www.oswegocac.org.