On one recent single day in her courtroom, Jefferson Family Court Judge Paula Sherlock said she presided over the cases of nearly 60 children who had experienced abuse or neglect.
They ranged from newborn babies to teenagers, said Sherlock, the chief of 10 family court judges. Children had been whipped with belts, punched in the face, burned with cigarettes. Two children, ages 3 and 7, had been sexually abused.
But what she and others say is a growing epidemic of child abuse remains largely unknown to the general public.
"You never see any of my kids in the paper because our cases are confidential," Sherlock said.