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Home  /  Resources  /  Sexual Violence Resources  /  What To Do If You've Just Been Sexually Assaulted

What To Do If You've Just Been Sexually Assaulted

First and foremost, know that this is not your fault. No one ever deserves to be sexually assaulted. It is your right to seek help and support at any time following an assault - from hospitals, law enforcement, and your local advocacy agency.

  • Go to a safe place or call 911 if you are unsafe.
  • Contact a trusted friend or family member and/or contact Alexandra House at 763-780-2330 for support. Advocates are available 24 hours a day and can meet you at the hospital. If you are a teen who has been sexually assaulted by an intimate partner or a peer (friend, acquaintance, or stranger) you have the right to make your own medical decisions and to receive confidential care and support from health care providers and advocates - your parents' permission or involvement is not a requirement.
  • Seek medical attention as soon as possible. You may feel physically OK, but it is still a good idea to talk to a health care provider. In Anoka County, Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE) are on-call 24 hours a day at Unity and Mercy Hospitals.
    • Within 120 hours of the assault:
      • You can obtain medications to prevent certain sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy.
      • You can have a forensic sexual assault examination.
      • You can receive referrals for medical, counseling, and advocacy services.
    • After 120 hours following an assault:
      • You can obtain testing for sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy.
      • You can receive referrals for medical, counseling, and advocacy services.
  • Make a police report if you choose. This can be done at any time.
    • Preserving evidence is critical following an assault. Even if you decide to report later, this evidence can be very helpful. To preserve evidence, follow these recommendations:
      • Do not shower, bathe, wash your hands, brush your teeth, use the toilet, or clean up in any way.
      • "Date rape" drugs can become difficult to detect hours after an assault, so if you think you've been drugged, attempt to not use the bathroom until you can get to the hospital or collect a urine sample at home yourself and bring it to the hospital.
      • Obtain a forensic exam at your local hospital. You can complete this immediately and it does not mean you have to make a police report, but the evidence will be preserved in case you wish to report later. Evidence collected following a sexual assault will be preserved for 90 days.
      • Do not destroy your clothing. If you change, place each garment in a separate paper bag.
      • If the assault occurred in your home, do not rearrange and/or clean up anything.
  • Special reminder: Services for sexual assault victims are available to men and women. Men are also sexually assaulted and suffer the same traumatic after-effects but often do not seek help.

Alexandra House advocates are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions and support you through this process. Call 763-780-2330.

What To Do If You've Just Been Sexually Assaulted  |  What is Sexual Violence?  |  Facts & Figures  |  What Causes Sexual Violence?  |  Aspects of Sexual Violence  |  Some Key Terms  |  Myths & Realities  |  Helpful Resources & Handouts

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