3 things you should do immediately following a sexual assault

Sexual assault can happen anywhere at any time and to anyone. It can leave its victims with life-long wounds to contend with. If you are a victim of sexual assault, you deserve justice.

Given the emotional and psychological trauma that comes with sexual assault, it is not uncommon for a victim to run out of ideas regarding what they should do. That said, here are three things you need to do immediately following a sexual assault:

Preserve evidence of the assault

Most sexual assault incidents usually involve some level of violence. Some of the evidence you can preserve include proof of struggle (torn clothes and scratches or physical wounds), surveillance footage or audio recordings. Additionally, it is advisable that you do not take a shower immediately following the assault as this could wash away evidence. DNA can be subjected to tests that help positively identify the perpetrator.

Seek treatment

It is important that you see a doctor as soon as possible following the assault. Besides obtaining a medical report that will be crucial when litigating your case, seeing a doctor will also ensure that you receive any required medicine. You may also be put on medication (anti-bacterial and antiretroviral) to protect you from contracting HIV and other STIs.

File a report

It takes courage to come out and report a sexual assault. However, it is important to understand that time is of the essence. Therefore, the sooner you report the assault, the better. Reporting the assault sooner rather than later will ensure that the police can carry out a thorough investigation and obtain the right evidence to pursue and successfully convict the perpetrator.

Sexual assault is a traumatizing experience, to say the least. Find out how you can safeguard your rights and pursue justice if you have been sexually assaulted. 

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