Have You Been Sexually Assaulted?
If You Have Been Sexually Assaulted…
- IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT
- Find a safe place
- Tell someone who will help and/or support you
- Seek medical care as soon as possible
- If you are an adult, remember it’s your choice whether or not to report it to the police
- Give yourself the time you need to heal
- Please know that you can seek help at any time.
Sexual Assault Exams Are Available Without Police Involvement**
- A confidential non-report sexual assault examination is conducted by a medical professional.
- A non-report sexual assault examination refers to the same examination provided to survivors who wish to report; however, there is no law requiring medical professionals to report adult sexual assault.
Who and When?
- Any survivor of sexual assault who is at least 18 years of age, consents to an examination and who arrives at a medical facility within 96 hours.
- Survivors often need time to prepare themselves before reporting since criminal investigations and reporting are often invasive and exhausting; however, forensic evidence collection is extremely important in sexual assault cases.
- Evidence collection supports a survivor in the criminal justice system.
- The Texas Department of Public Safety will store any evidence collected from a non-report sexual assault examination for up to 2 years.
- The sexual assault examination has two parts: medical and forensic.
- The Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Section 56.065 requires the Texas Department of Public Safety to pay for the forensic portion of the medical examination and for the evidence collection kit; however, if a survivor arrives after the 96 hour window and requests a forensic examination, they would be financially responsible.
- Survivors may also receive medical treatment that is unrelated to evidence collection (e.g. medication, stitches). Those costs that are purely medical will be billed to the survivor. In contrast, survivors who DO report to law enforcement are eligible for reimbursement for the medical portions of the exam through the Crime Victims’ Compensation program.
** Texas Association Against Sexual Assault: Sexual Assault Examinations Without Police Involvement, A Guide to Texas’ New Law (2016). See www.taasa.org↩