Reporting to the police
If you have been raped or sexually assaulted, you should report the crime to the police as soon as possible.
You will be dealt with sensitively by specialist officers. They will be experienced in dealing with victims of sexual assaults and will understand the distress and fear you may be feeling.
You may be asked to give the police the items of clothing you were wearing when you were attacked, because they may contain traces of evidence that can identify the person who attacked you.
The police will also arrange for you to have a medical examination. The doctor may treat any of your injuries (depending on their seriousness, or could refer you for specialist medical treatment) and also gather any evidence that may help the police with their investigation. The doctor will talk to you about the examination beforehand, so you understand what they're doing and why they're doing it.
The police will want to talk to you again as they investigate the crime. They will keep you updated with any developments in the investigation.
Advice and support organisations
There are different organisations giving advice and support to victims of sexual violence.
- 24-hour domestic and sexual violence helpline
- Nexus NI
- Women's Aid Federation NI
- Men's Advisory Project
- Rainbow Project