Obtaining a lawyer for sexual assault is the best defense you can arm yourself with, as it guarantees that you will not have to fight all by yourself. The hierarchy that exists in society, school, and the workplace may make it difficult for the victim to come forward or to even have their case be heard. Not having a lawyer on your side in such an instance is often traumatic and energy-sapping for the victim and their family. If you have been sexually assaulted or know of someone close to you who has been assaulted, here are some general tips as to what to do and how to cope:
Tips For Victims Of Sexual Assault
- Firstly, it’s important to know what sexual assault is, and where and how it can occur. Sexual assault can occur anywhere: at a party, at school, and at work. It is any sexual conduct, verbal or physical, that is non-consensual. This includes but is not limited to, name calling or unwanted sexual conversations with the victim, inappropriate touching, attempted rape and rape, voyeurism, molestation, sexual harassment, exhibitionism, and any other forms of unwanted sexual activity. The perpetrator can be anyone from a stranger, an acquaintance, family member, teacher, or boss. Men and women can be both perpetrators and victims.
- If you have been physically assaulted, get to a safe place immediately, such as a police station, and do not wash yourself nor change your clothes as this could destroy evidence.
- If you cannot or do not want to go to a police station, call 911 and go to a hospital. Inform the staff member that you have been sexually assaulted. It is important that you receive medical care after an assault to guard yourself from STI’s and pregnancy.
- If you have been assaulted in your own room or office, leave the scene intact – do not move or clean anything.
- It is important that the incident is investigated, even though that may be a scary thought in the beginning. The perpetrator may be a family member, or you may rely upon them for your income and livelihood. Be this as it may, when you get a lawyer for sexual assault your chances of overcoming the situation are exponentially increased.
- The lack of consent is not necessarily negated by state of mind. Simply because you may have been intoxicated or you suffer from a mental condition does not mean that the act was consented to. Being intoxicated numbs the senses and therefore consent cannot be given. Do not feel guilty or bad that you were intoxicated either – it does not mean that it was your fault or that you “asked for it”.
Common Misconceptions About The Validity Of Reporting Sexual Assault
- No physical injuries – this does not mean that you have not been assaulted, and injuries may be internal. It is important to still visit your nearest hospital and get help. Injuries on the outside of your body are not the only evidence of sexual assault.
- I know the person who hurt me – approximately 2/3 victims know their perpetrators, and some are in a subordinate position to the perpetrator. Whether you know someone or not, you must report the incident to gain justice and healing for yourself.
- I am currently in a relationship with the perpetrator or have been intimate with them in the past – if you have given someone consent in the past it does not mean they have free access to you whenever they wish – it is still a crime if it is unwanted, and should be brought to book.
- The perpetrator got scared away and didn’t finish the assault – this is attempted rape. The very fact that someone attempted or tried to sexually assault you, whether it has been concluded or not, is illegal.
Being sexually assaulted robs the victim of their power, but you can get your power back by ensuring that the perpetrator pays for their crime. Do not stay quiet or try to fight alone. A firm such as California Legal Team can help you to gain justice for yourself both financially and personally.