How to Report Sexual Abuse in California

Fighting For Important Causes In State And Federal Courts

The trauma associated with sexual abuse extends further than the actual abusive conduct. It is not uncommon for victims of sexual assault to struggle with what to do after an attack, including reporting the crime. It is important to understand that, while you might feel alone, you are not. There are advocacy groups that provide assistance and the police are empathetic to your plight. Additionally, medical and healthcare professionals will work to treat your injuries and provide comfort. The attorneys and staff at The Law Offices of Andrew Shubin are also available to help you fight for justice and compensation. Below, our California institutional sexual abuse attorney reviews the steps you should take when reporting sexual abuse or assault.

Steps to Take if You Were the Victim of Sexual Abuse in California

Sexual abuse is not limited to women and it does not always involve a stranger. Often, sexual assault is committed by someone you know and trust. This connection could make it difficult to act after an assault. However, if you have been the victim of a sexual assault, there are some things you should immediately do to protect yourself.

First, if you are in immediate danger, call 911 immediately.

However, if the assault is over and you and there is no imminent risk of harm, you should do two things. Contact your local law enforcement authority and make a report. You might consider reporting the incident in person. While it is not required and might be difficult, you should report the incident as soon as possible. Not only are the details fresh in your mind, but the police will also have a significantly better chance of collecting valuable evidence at the scene of the incident. Waiting to report an assault often results in crucial evidence being contaminated or lost forever.

Next, you should seek medical treatment and report the abuse during your examination. Your treating physicians and nurses will be required to report the incident and, but more importantly, they will work to find and preserve evidence while administering treatment. You should not wash or shower before seeking treatment to help protect any evidence that might exist.

For your own well-being, you should seek help from a sexual abuse support group or organization. The aftermath of a sexual assault is not easy. Fortunately, there are resources and people trained to assist you through this difficult time.

You are also entitled to pursue a civil lawsuit to seek monetary recovery for the trauma and injuries you suffered. Our compassionate California sexual abuse victims defense attorney is available to review your options in complete confidentiality.

The Importance of Reporting Sexual Abuse in California

Reporting a sexual assault or abuse is never easy. It is essential to understand that by making a criminal report or filing a civil lawsuit, you are helping get a dangerous individual off the streets. Reporting the crime could also instill a sense of justice or closure.

However, in many cases, filing a civil lawsuit provides a victim a sense of autonomy and a financial reward to help with the cost of medical treatment or therapy. The scars of sexual abuse or assault rarely disappear on their own.

At The Law Offices of Andrew Shubin, we believe that sexual offenders should be criminally prosecuted and punished. However, our legal system is not perfect and it is geared towards punishing the defendant – not providing support for the victim. Often, the victim of sexual abuse or assault is another piece of evidence in a criminal case.

Survivors of sexual abuse usually experience a wide variety of emotions, including pain, depression, anger, and shame. They might find reporting a sexual assault crime an additional trauma that opens up wounds they do not want to experience. Our California attorneys for sexual abuse by the Catholic Church, teacher, coach, or other person will advocate for your well-being. Many times, a victim of abuse will feel a sense of justice by pursuing a civil lawsuit.

Criminal Prosecution vs. Civil Lawsuits for Sexual Assault in California

District attorneys or state’s attorneys handle criminal prosecutions on behalf of the federal government or state. These attorneys do not represent the survivors of sexual assault.

However, our California institutional sexual abuse attorneys represent the victims of sexual assault or abuse. Our office could file a civil lawsuit on your behalf against your assailant or, in many cases, a third party that could be held responsible for the harm you suffered. For example, a religious institution could be held accountable if it failed to address or ignored allegations of sexual misconduct.

By providing compassionate, sympathetic, yet professionally aggressive representation for our clients, survivors of sexual abuse feel that their voice is heard and their concerns are addressed. Our office also fully understands that sexual abuse is a sensitive and painful experience. We are devoted to our clients’ welfare and offer completely confidential representation.

Through a criminal prosecution, your assailant could be sentenced to time in jail. While this might provide a sense of justice, it does not necessarily give you the tools to move forward. Through a personal injury lawsuit, you could receive monetary compensation for your medical costs and money to pay for psychological therapy. Money will not heal your wounds, but it could provide the means to move forward with your life.

Call Our California Attorney for Sexual Abuse Victims to Confidentially Discuss Your Case

No victim of sexual abuse should have to go through the experience alone. Survivors have the right to pursue criminal charges. They also are entitled to seek justice through a civil lawsuit. If you or a loved one were sexually abused at camp, school, or elsewhere, contact our compassionate attorney to review your options and rights.  Call The Law Office of Andrew Shubin at (814) 826-3586 to schedule a confidential appointment.


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