Whether or not to make a police report is a very personal decision that only you can make. Reasons some survivors give for filing a report include:
- Holding the perpetrator accountable
- Regaining a sense of power and control
- Documenting the crime
- Preserving evidence of the assault
If you choose to file a police report.
During the first interview, the police will ask questions about the assault. The police ask specific questions because it is important to document the crime fully and to identify all the forms of abuse you suffered. If you feel uncomfortable or are embarrassed by any of the questions, you have the right to ask the police to explain the reasons for the questions. An advocate or a friend can accompany you to provide emotional support during the interview, although they cannot answer questions or talk for you.
The officers will prepare a written report, using the information you give them. Review the report for accuracy before signing. If your assailant is arrested and prosecuted, your report may be used during the trial. You can request a copy of the report for your own records.
Why keeping in touch with the police is important.
Immediately after the assault, you may have been too upset to remember everything that took place. Although difficulty recalling details is distressing, it is a very common reaction to a traumatic experience. You can contact the police after the interview to provide them with such details.
Additionally, if your contact information changes (e.g., cell phone number), you will need to call the police to notify them of how you can be reached.
Can I get services at BRCC if I don’t file a police report?
Absolutely. The Bluegrass Rape Crisis Center provides assistance to survivors of sexual violence regardless of their choice to file a police report or seek medical attention. To discuss your options, call BRCC’s 24-hour crisis line at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).