Recently Attacked: what should I do?
Firstly, you must look after yourself:
Are you in a safe place? Can you go to a place where you will be safe? Are you injured? Do you need emergency help?
If you are alone, could you contact someone to come and be with you?
If you are injured
If you have been injured, you may need to be treated by your doctor or a hospital. If you are badly injured you may need to call 999 and ask for an ambulance.
If you are not seriously injured and there is any chance that you might want your forensic evidence to be preserved, you can contact the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) for advice as there are optimum timescales for having a forensic medical with them. Please see below.
Thinking of reporting to the police?
You may wish to go straight to the police to report what has happened to you. Here is a link to police procedures where you will find information on the procedure the police will follow if you report to them.
If you want to report at this point
If you would like to make a report to the police you can call 101, go to a police station or go to the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) to have forensic evidence collected. It is suggested you:
- Do not wash
- Do not brush your teeth
- Do not have a cigarette
- Do not eat or drink
- Do not change your clothes (if you do change, keep your clothes safe in a paper orplastic bag)
- Try not go to the toilet
Do not clear up anything from the area of the incident
Don’t worry if you have already done some of these things. It’s possible that there is still forensic evidence to collect. It is also possible to report without this being collected if you do not feel able to go to the SARC.
Unsure if you want to report to the police?
If you are unsure at the moment if you want to report to the police straight away, you have the option to refer yourself to the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) If you do this, you will be able to have any forensic evidence collected and preserved until such time as you decide what you would like to do.
If you are worried about pregnancy
If there is a possibility you may be pregnant you can take the morning after pill up to 72 hours after, or if you have the coil fitted, up to five days after. You can get the morning after pill from a chemist, your doctor, a genito-urinary medicine or from the SARC if you have a medical with them.
If you are worried about sexually transmitted infections
If you are worried that you might be at risk from a transmitted infections, you can have fully confidential advice and treatment from https://www.sexualhealthhertfordshire.clch.nhs.uk/