New York Sexual Assault And Rape Victim Lawyers

New York Sexual Assault And Rape Victim Lawyers2018-01-26T16:00:09+00:00

Sexual assault and rape are widely considered some of the most horrendous and violent crimes a person can have committed against them. Despite this recognition, it is estimated that anywhere from 50% – 90% of rapes go unreported. It is time that we break through the culture of secrecy created around this disgusting crime and stand strong beside the victims. Some of these assaults and rapes can be avoided when companies and institutions take the necessary precautions. If their negligence caused your assault or rape, you may be entitled to compensation as a victim of crime.

A Culture of Staying Silent

What has caused our society as a whole to create a culture in which rape victims are either afraid or too ashamed to come forward? Recently it came to light that famed comedian Bill Cosby has been accused of sexually assaulting around 50 women. The alleged assaults began as far back as 1967 with Kristina Ruehli.

Ruehli admits that she told no one about the alleged incident because she was embarrassed. She blamed herself for putting herself in a position where something like that had the potential to happen.

What ultimately changed her mind, and inspired her to speak out, was when 38 years later, a woman named Andrea Constand filed charges against Cosby alleging he sexually assaulted her. Initially, Constand was treated with disbelief by many and called a liar. Ruehli and over forty other women came forward to stand beside Constand. Cosby denies any wrongdoing despite the numerous allegations.

Why Don’t Victims Report Sexual Assaults?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 1 in 5 women and around 1 in 71 men in the United States have been the victims of rape.

Studies have shown that there are multiple factors which influence a victim to not report a rape. Psychological barriers like anxiety, shame, and fear all play a key role while the victim processes what has happened to them. In general, victims don’t want anyone to know what happened to them.

In one research report conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice on “The Sexual Victimization of College Women”, it was determined that 9 out of 10 women knew who their a woman after a sexual assaultattacker was. Often a victim is less likely to name their attacker for fear of being ostracized by mutual friends, criticized, and even blamed for what happened.

In addition, victims are often scared of the actual process of reporting their rape to the authorities. After having just been physically violated the thought of having medical examinations to collect evidence may induce panic. After the evidence collection, having to verbally discuss the event with a stranger while making police reports can seem overwhelming.

Famous singer/songwriter Madonna summed these fears up perfectly in an interview with Howard Stern saying “You’ve already been violated. It’s just not worth it. It’s too much humiliation.”

Reporting To The Police

Due to the emotional trauma caused by sexual assault, many victims do not immediately report that a sexual assault crime has been committed. Please know that it is never too late to report a sexual assault or to seek counseling.  Most police stations have officers who are specifically trained on how to help victims of sexual assault, and you are encouraged to have a friend or family member with you to provide emotional support as you make a police report.

What is Rape?

Sexual Assault is defined by the Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network as “sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the victim.” This can include:

  • Physical penetration of the body (rape).
  • Attempted rape.
  • Forcing other sexual acts on another person, such as oral sex.
  • Unwanted groping or fondling.

Although the majority of all sexual assaults occur as an assault against a woman, it is important to remember that sexual assault is not limited to male-on-female interactions. It also can occur in a male-on-male, female-on-female, female-on-male, or adult-on-child interaction.

What Should I Do If I’ve Been Raped Or Sexually Assaulted?

  • Call the police immediately.
  • As difficult as it may be, preserve all physical evidence. Do not shower, brush your teeth, drink, or eat until the police and a trained medical professional have been able to collect all available evidence from your body. Keep all clothing that you had on at the time of the assault. Do not clean or disturb the area where the assault took place.
  • Seek medical attention as quickly as possible. If you suspect you have been given a date rape drug, be sure to mention this to your doctor so that they can perform testing to detect the drug.
  • Write down or record on an audio device as much as you can remember from the incident.
  • Call a friend or family member. The emotional trauma of sexual assault is just as horrific as the physical trauma and you will need someone to support you through this difficult time.

a date rape drugResources for Victims

What Are My Legal Options?

We understand what you have been through. We have helped many victims of rape and sexual assault bring a civil suit to recover damages and compensation from institutions and third parties who were responsible via their negligence for your sexual assault or rape. As experienced rape victim lawyers, we have unfortunately seen too many incidents where the following happened in apartment buildings, bars, parking lots, schools, churches, Universities, and places of employment:

  • permitted the rape or sexual abuse to occur through failed security
  • tried to cover up the incident
  • failed to report the abuse to the authorities
  • did not perform background checks on employees or tenants
  • did not provide the necessary lighting, video, and security to deter criminals

If you have been sexually assaulted you can seek to press criminal charges against your attacker. You may also be able to pursue a civil suit against the attacker or a third party.  Many survivors have found a sense of relief and empowerment from pursuing such legal actions.

While a monetary reward will not reverse what happened, it can help you move forward with more financial security. We know the recovery process is long. We know you are likely receiving counseling. We are here for you when you are ready to take that next step to recovery.

If you or a loved one have been the victim of rape or sexual assault, call the experienced attorneys at Banville Law today. We offer free consultations to all victims who want to learn more about their legal options. Call (917) 551-6690.

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