First Steps When a sexual assault occurs, please seek safety and support.
There are other people at Colgate who can help. Your health and safety are most important. Make sure you are safe from further harm.
If you do not feel safe or have a serious injury, Campus Safety can assist you immediately. Call 315-228-7911
. The police can be reached at 911.
If you have a friend or roommate who you trust, call them or go find them. You may also consider calling a trusted family member. On campus, there are personnel who are trained to assist victims of sexual assault available through Campus Safety
, the Haven, or the Counseling Center
. You do not need to formally report the incident to seek medical attention or receive support services from the university. These confidential services are available through the Haven, the Counseling Center, Student Health Services, and the Chaplains Office.
Confidential staff members are also available to accompany you to the Hamilton Police Department
if you wish to file criminal charges.
It is strongly recommended that you seek medical attention as soon as possible after a sexual assault. Medical examination is an important component of the care that is provided to a sexual assault survivor. One of the reasons for medical examination is to check for any physical injuries; not all injuries are immediately apparent. In addition, preventive treatments for sexually transmitted diseases and HIV, as well as pregnancy prevention, are available. These should happen as soon as possible. If you choose to have a medical exam,
it is recommended that you do not
shower, bathe, douche, eat, drink, brush your teeth, or wash your hands until after you meet with a nurse. If there is any possibility that you might want to make a police report, evidence may be on your body that can be destroyed through these activities. If you haven't changed your clothing, keep the original clothes on, and bring an extra set to wear home from the hospital. The police may need to keep your clothes for evidence.
If you have already changed your clothes, place the clothes you were wearing at the time of the incident in a paper bag (plastic destroys evidence). If the assault occurred in your residence, try not to disturb the scene. Call Campus Safety at 315-228-7911
, and they can put you in touch with the on-call counselor. a dean, and an investigator if you wish. Transportation to Community Memorial Hospital in Hamilton can be provided without a report being filed.
If there is any chance at all that you might want to report the sexual assault, either now or in the near future, evidence should be collected within 96 hours of the assault. Specially trained nurses, called Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE), are available 24 hours a day at hospitals in Oneida and Syracuse to meet the medical and evidence collection needs of individuals who have been sexually assaulted. It is highly recommended that you contact Campus Safety
, who will provide free transportation for you to a hospital where you can be seen by a SANE. You do not
need to file a report with Campus Safety to request transportation to see a SANE. Neither Campus Safety nor the hospital will contact the police without your consent.
You can download a PDF of the details of medical care
you will receive in the emergency room.
Even if you are undecided about whether or not you wish to report the assault to the police, it is recommended to have evidence collected as soon as possible after a sexual assault so that you keep your options open for the future.
If you choose not to report to the police, but do decide the make a formal complaint of sexual misconduct for an on-campus hearing process, the evidence can be presented in the university hearing. Physical evidence can be very important in sexual assault cases.