What Should I Do If I Have Been Sexually Assaulted?
- Talk to someone that you trust.
- Get medical attention at a hospital emergency room immediately! Even if you do not want to report the incident.
- Certain activities destroy important physical evidence that aid in prosecuting the assailant(s) if you decide to do so. Physical evidence is best collected ASAP. Do not bathe, douche, shower, drink, or eat after the assault. Place your clothing in a paper bag (plastic destroys evidence) or take a change of clothes to the hospital, they will use the ones you're wearing as evidence.
- Write down everything you remember with as much detail as possible. This will help your own healing process as well as any legal action you might take.
Remember! It's NOT your fault!
Things to Consider
PLEASE put your physical safety and well-being first! You may be unaware of injuries you have. Southside Community Hospital provides Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners to collect and preserve evidence as well as provide treatment for exposure to sexually transmitted infections. They can also discuss options for preventing pregnancy i.e. "the morning after pill." (This should ideally be provided within 72 hours).
Sexual assault is a traumatic experience and many survivors find counseling to be a very important part of the healing process. A counselor can assist you in understanding and work through your feelings about the assault. Counseling and Psychological Services also provides excellent follow-up services to aid in the recovery process.
We strongly encourage you to report sexual assaults to the appropriate law enforcement agencies and officials. Reporting an assault is the only effective way that action can be taken against the alleged attacker(s). Several reporting systems are available.
Reporting to campus police helps protect yourself and others from future victimization. Reports can be used for criminal prosecution, Longwood disciplinary action, and/or civil action against the perpetrator(s). If you report an incident, a Longwood police officer will take your statement of what happened. You will be asked to identify or describe the alleged assailant(s), questions about the scene of the crime, and about any witnesses. Reporting an incident is NOT the same as choosing to prosecute. When you file a report, you are not obligated to continue with legal proceedings or Longwood disciplinary action. The Longwood police officer will take a written report which is important in case you wish to file charges (criminally or through the judicial process) immediately or at a later date.
Longwood Disciplinary Process
Students, staff or faculty who have been subjected to or believe they have witnessed sexual assault should notify the Director of Student Conduct and Integrity and University Title IX Coordinator. Longwood's Disciplinary Process is one of many options for victims and complaints of Sexual Misconduct and can be filed up to 180 days after an incident. It is important to remember, that even after 180 days the University can take steps to provide accommodations, resources and measures to limit the effects of the sexual assault and prevent reoccurrence.
The complainant is entitled to a private hearing to determine whether there has been a violation of the University Sexual Misconduct Policy and, if so, what type of sanction(s), up to and including dismissal from the University, should be imposed. For more information, please see the Sexual Misconduct Policy.
Sexual Misconduct Process: My Rights
- The right to have a support person or advisor throughout the process, who may also be legal counsel.
- The right to remain present, either in person or via live feed, throughout the entire hearing (not including the deliberative process).
- The right to have access to existing campus counseling and support services.
- The right to interim services to prevent reoccurrence of the behavior.
- The right to freedom from retaliation by the respondent (or supporters of the rspondent).
- The right to submit a statement of how the misconduct has impacted the educational, living and/or working environment of the complainant.
- The right to know the outcome of the investigation, the outcome of the hearing, appeal and the sanctions, remedies and corrective actions taken by the University.
- The right to be informed of the ability to request changes in academic, employment and living situations.
- The right to request a single appeal of the outcome of the University Hearing Board's decision.
Longwood encourages reporting the incident to the campus and/or local police. Reporting an assault does not mean the survivor has to go to court, but it does begin the legal process should the decision to prosecute be made at a later date. Longwood police officials are available to assist the survivor throughout the investigation and criminal court process.
Third Party/ Anonymous Reports
Either the survivor or someone on her/his behalf may complete a CONFIDENTIAL form available on-line at http://www.longwood.edu/police.
Please know that Longwood University values the safety and confidentiality of all faculty, staff, and students. Electronic notifications regarding incidents such as sexual assault are sent to the Longwood Community without identifying information.
Who Can I Contact For Help?
- Campus Police: 395-2091
- Counseling and Psychological Services: 395.2409
- Piedmont Crisis Center: 888.819.2926
- Southside Community Hospital: 434.392.8811
- Virginia Sexual Assault Hotline: 800.838.8238
- Student Health and Wellness: Center 395.2102
- Dean of Students: 395.2389
- Student Conduct & Integrity/Title IX Coordinator: 395.2490