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Survivors > Sexual Violence > Dos and Donts if you want to prosecute

What you should know

If you wish to prosecute the perpetrator, then preserving evidence is important. Therefore you must follow a few procedures to ensure that proper evidence is collected:

- Do not wash, comb, or clean any part of your body.

- Do not change clothes if possible, so the hospital staff can collect evidence.

- Do not touch or change anything at the scene of the assault.

- Go to your nearest hospital emergency room as soon as possible. Some evidence may become weak as time passes therefore, it is best if evidence collection takes place within 24 hours of the assault.

 - You will need to be examined in order to collect evidence using a rape kit to find fibers, hairs, saliva, semen, or clothing that the attacker may have left behind.

- You do not have to do any part of this evaluation that you do not want to do. However, once the evidence is collected, by law an FIR must be filled reporting the sexual assault.

- It would be helpful to also contact a womens organization in your area for additional support at this time. They will be able to provide you with the necessary information on how to proceed if you wish to prosecute.

- File an FIR with the police detailing the assault and demand a copy of the same. You can ask the health care provider to contact the police after the medical examination is completed. Again, as time passes details of the assault might not be so clear in your memory, hence it is important to report the assault as soon as it occurs.

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