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5 Things to Do When Accused of Sexual Assault

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An accusation of sexual assault can dramatically change your life. Suddenly, a simple gesture or spontaneous comment becomes the focus of widespread attention, police included. Watch your actions in public, with family and friends, or at your workplace.

There’s a widespread belief that sexual assault only involves direct physical force, but this understanding is incomplete. Sexual assault also covers any unwelcome touching sexually or suggestively, even if intended as a joke. Here are five things to do if you find yourself accused of sexual assault.

Shut Up

If you are unjustly accused of sexual assault or domestic violence, the foremost action should be to withhold from speaking to the police, law enforcement, or any official authorities. Recognizing that you are facing a serious situation is vital. 

Many individuals tend to underestimate the severity of their circumstances. It is not advisable to issue any statements to the authorities without fully comprehending the evidence they have gathered against you.

Talk to an Attorney

When you discuss the charge against you with a Purser Law Edmonton sexual assault lawyer or Purser Law lawyer, the discussion is considered “privileged.” This indicates that your interactions with the lawyer remain private, and they cannot testify against you.

Recognizing that this confidentiality applies exclusively to conversations with lawyers is crucial. Conversations about the charge with friends, family, or fellow students do not enjoy this privilege. Avoid seeking advice from friends or family since they could be summoned to testify against you.

Acknowledge the Seriousness of Your Situation

Be aware of the serious consequences of underestimating the legal outcomes of poor decisions. Many individuals tend to deny or underestimate the severity of their legal predicaments. This denial often leads to a failure to take necessary actions, resulting in significantly more complex legal issues than were originally present.

For instance, consider the situation where allegations of child sexual abuse are brought up during a divorce case, and you believe they are not significant. Or perhaps your lawyer reassures you there is no substantial case against you. 

If you don’t take immediate and appropriate action, you might soon face criminal charges, become involved in juvenile court matters, or, in the worst-case scenario, deal with all these issues simultaneously. Prompt and correct responses could drastically lower the eventual financial and emotional costs compared to the consequences of allowing the situation to spiral out of control.

Establish a War Chest

Many individuals are hesitant to acknowledge the financial burden that accompanies cases of this nature. Facing unfounded allegations of child abuse, rape, or domestic violence significantly increases the likelihood of being charged criminally. Should these charges materialize, the chance of a conviction is markedly high without decisive action to control the situation effectively.

These actions include obtaining specialized psychological evaluations, administering carefully calibrated polygraph tests, assembling vital evidence, and engaging expert consultation. The financial commitment for these necessary steps extends into thousands, not merely hundreds, of dollars. While there are offers of inexpensive, straightforward, and rapid resolutions, these options are rarely cost-effective, expedient, or simple.

Preserve Possible Evidence

In these situations, most crucial evidence tends to come from cell phone data. Preserve various forms of this data, including text messages, messages from apps, emails, photographs, posts on social media, and credit card statements, among others. This information is frequently irretrievable once erased and cannot be recovered.

If you notice someone else has posted something relevant on Facebook or another social media platform, capture a screenshot of that post as soon as possible before it’s potentially removed. Store all such evidence securely in a folder or on a thumb drive, ensuring it remains confidential.

Endnote

Encountering accusations of sexual assault presents a critical issue, yet following these four steps could help in minimizing troubles. Engage with your legal advisor and delegate handling all subsequent issues to them. Regardless of the outcome, thinking about counseling could be advantageous as it may reduce the possible effects on your mental and emotional health.

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