Evil is everywhere. We usually think of harmful acts as taking place in secret, but some people do not hesitate to do them in public. Also, beware of everyone because your abuser may not be a stranger. It could be someone close to you or even someone you care about. Before we get to the heart of the matter, it’s important to know what sexual assault is. Sexual assault is classified as an unhealthy act and is punishable by law. This article will help you deal with such an act.
Definition of sexual assault
Any sexual assault that is accompanied by violence or threats is considered sexual assault. Physical contact without the victim’s consent is all that is required to make it a criminal offense. If you are the victim, the performance of the act can be classified as follows:
- You showed clear refusal and defended yourself, but the abuser continued to touch you
- You did not respond to moral restraint
- You are unable to defend yourself because of a medical condition or because you have been drugged.
Alert law enforcement
Call the police or the gendarmerie immediately or send them a text message in case of emergency. You can also use instant messaging to speak with an officer. Rest assured, all discussions are confidential.
Take contact information from witnesses.
If you have been sexually assaulted in a public setting, be sure to gather contact information from people who may have witnessed the action. This will give you the best chance of being heard by the investigators.
File a complaint
You have 6 years after the facts to file a complaint. To do so, go to the nearest police station. It will then be transferred to the public prosecutor. You can also file it directly with the public prosecutor by sending a letter to the judicial court in the place where the assault took place. This letter must contain:
- Your civil status and contact information
- A detailed description of the facts with the exact date and place
- The name of the aggressor (if you know him) or it will be a complaint against X
- The contact information of witnesses
- The estimate of the damage
- The elements of proof
- The desire to be a civil party.
Call on a lawyer
You have the right to be assisted by a lawyer to defend you. A good lawyer will be able to accompany you during the hearings and confrontations with your aggressor. If the abuser is your spouse, you are facing domestic violence. Contact a family criminal lawyer to handle your case.
Get a medical examination.
A medical examination will serve as irrefutable proof. This must be done as soon as possible after the fact to be admissible. To maximize the results, avoid taking a shower before going to the doctor. This examination allows us to determine the injuries to collect traces of DNA as well as any toxic products that may have been injected into your body. You will also receive the necessary treatment and obtain a medical certificate describing your condition.
Prepare for a trial
A court trial will take place if the court believes there is enough evidence to implicate your abuser. Usually, the hearing is open to the public. However, your identity will be kept confidential without your consent. It is also possible to request a closed hearing if you wish, but it may not be granted.
Ask for help
Do not hesitate to ask for support from the different structures. Their role is to guide you, advise you and listen to you. You can call some hotlines like 800.656.HOPE (4673) which are victim support numbers.
Get help if you need it and talk to someone about your experience because more people than you think have been through the same experience. There is also a victim support office if you prefer to talk about it in person. Remember, you did nothing wrong, you are a survivor, and you are strong.
Sound off in the comment section below and tell us what you want to read next and if you want to read more about sexual abuse.