Sexual Assault Lawyer
Sexual assault is any unwanted physical contact that is sexual in nature. Under this definition, sexual assault can include non-consensual touching or more serious violations like non-consensual sexual activity, rape, aggravated rape, attempted rape, incest, child molestation, or any other unwanted sexual act which occurs by force, coercion, or the under duress.
Acts of voyeurism, exhibitionism, and sexual harassment may also be considered sexual assault. Sexual assault can be committed by a stranger, but more often it is perpetrated by an acquaintance or someone the victim knows.
Victims of Sexual Assault
Just as the victim of any crime is not to blame for the violations against them, so the victim of sexual assault is not to blame for the violations against her. The victims of sexual assault often deal with a tumultuous mix of emotional, psychological, physical and legal consequences after a sexual assault.
In addition to being a crime, sexual assault is also an intimate invasion into one’s personhood. The consequences of sexual assault are often exasperated when the victim knows her assailant. Regardless of the relationship, however, sexual assault is a criminal act against an innocent victim.
Sexual Assualt Statistics
Sexual assault knows not the boundaries of gender, age, race, or ability, though statistics indicate that women are more commonly assaulted than men. One in four women will be the victim of sexual assault in their lifetimes. One in seven women will be raped in college, 90 percent of which will know their assailant.
Rape, a common form of sexual assault, is non-consensual (forced or manipulated) sexual activity whereby a person’s sexuality is used as a weapon against them. The physical uses of force or verbalized threats are not required for an act to be considered sexual assault.
If a victim is under duress, manipulated, drugged, under the legal age of consent, or unable to make a cognitive decision, any subsequent sexual activity that occurs is considered sexual assault. Consent to sexual activities must be clear; it is not implied by relationship or circumstance.
Steps to Take After a Sexual Assault
After a sexual assault occurs, it is vital that the victim get to a safe place and contact a trusted person or an anonymous sexual assault crisis hotline. Though difficult, a victim should seek medical attention before changing clothes, washing, or treating any injuries.
This medical exam can provide important information which can protect you later. The victims of sexual assault also have the option of filing a police report under their name or anonymously. Filing an anonymous report can help prevent that assailant from committing acts of sexual assault. If you do include your name on the report, you may still decide whether or not you wish to press charges against your assailant.
Contact a Sexual Assault Lawyer
The victim of sexual assault has the legal right to press criminal and civil charges against the offender. If you or a loved one has experienced a sexual assault, a caring and competent attorney can evaluate your case to determine your legal rights and options. This experienced and highly qualified professional can also ensure that your interests are protected throughout all legal proceedings. If you would like to learn more about sexual assault, please contact us to speak with a reputable attorney in your area.
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