Immediately After an Assault

What should I do after a sexual assault?

  • Get to a safe place as soon as you can.

  • Talk with an advocate or counselor (WA, AK, ID, MT, OR) who can give you confidential information about your options and provide emotional support. You may also contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline, which offers a 24/7 phone and chat hotline.

  • You may decide to call the police. You can call 9-1-1 or the campus police department, if you have one. If you call from a cell phone, and you want your school to be involved, let the 9-1-1 operator know if the assault happened on campus and they can route you to the campus police department.

  • Get medical attention as soon as possible to get medical care for any physical injuries.

  • If you want a forensic examination to collect evidence, the examination must be performed within 96 hours after the assault. Learn more about what to expect during a forensic examination here

  • You can also get emergency contraception to prevent pregnancy, and medicine to help prevent sexually transmitted infections. Emergency contraception should be taken within 72 hours.

  • Some forms of emergency contraception do not work for individuals who weigh over 155 pounds. Learn more, here.

  • If you have called the police, they may be able to help you arrange for transport to the hospital. You can go to the hospital without deciding to report the sexual assault to the police.

  • You can also contact a sexual assault service provider. Service providers may be able to provide you with counseling, support groups, accompany you to the hospital, shelter, casework, and more.