Myth: He bought dinner and paid for everything, so I have to have sex with him.
Truth: You ALWAYS have the right to say no to sex. Even within a relationship or marriage you have the right to say no to sex.
Myth: Rape is almost always by a stranger of a different race than me.
Truth: Sexual assault is almost never perpetrated by a stranger. The rapist is usually a friend, acquaintance or partner. Perpetrators are most often the same race as the victim.
Myth: Rape is when someone holds a gun or knife to the victim and threatens them.
Truth: A weapon is rarely used in rapes. Threats of violence and physical intimidation are more commonly used, but most often rape is just the perpetrators’ refusal to take.
Myth: Women get raped because wear slutty clothes or act seductively.
Truth: What a woman wears or how she act has little to no impact on the actions of a rapist. Rape is never the fault of the victim. The only person at fault is the perpetrator.
Wyoming Association of Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police Policy On Forensic Medical Exams for Sexual Assault Victims NOT Reporting to Law Enforcement
While a victim of sexual assault in Wyoming has the opportunity to participate in the criminal justice system, victims of sexual assault will not be required to participate in the criminal justice system or cooperate with law enforcement in order to be provided a forensic medical exam.
Victims of sexual assault shall have access to a forensic medical exam upon their request. When a victim of sexual assault presents to victim advocates, medical professionals or law enforcement and chooses NOT to report the assault to law enforcement and/or wants to remain anonymous, they shall, if they desire, be provided a forensic medical exam.
If, at the time the exam is conducted, the victim chooses not to report the assault to law enforcement and the exam is performed by a trained examiner, the medical facility will bill the Wyoming Division of Victim Services for the costs of the forensic medical exam.
If forensic evidence is collected, the evidence will be turned over to the local law enforcement (without the victims name) that would otherwise have jurisdiction, who will maintain custody of the evidence using the medical facility's identification number in lieu of the patient's name.
The evidence shall be maintained at the receiving law enforcement agency for a period of (18) eighteen months. If a report has not been made, the evidence will be destroyed after (18) eighteen months.
See 42 U.S.C. 3796gg-4(d) The Violence Against Women and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act of 2005 (VAWA 2005)
Was I Raped??????
How can you figure out if what happened was rape? There are a few questions to consider:
Rape victims may be forced through threats or physical means. In about 8 out of 10 rapes, no weapon is used other than physical force. Anyone may be a victim of rape: women, men or children, straight or gay.
Acquaintance assault involves coercive sexual activities that occur against a person's will by means of force, violence, duress, or fear of bodily injury. These sexual activities are imposed upon them by someone they know.
Sexual violence of children often includes incest as a subset of this form of sexual violence. While there is a substantial amount of overlap in the two types of violence, for the purposes of this website we have separated them in recognition of the different needs that victims of each type of violence may have.
Partner rape includes sexual acts committed without a person's consent and/or against a person's will when the perpetrator is the individual's current partner (married or not), previous partner, or co-habitator.
Sexual exploitation by helping professionals involves sexual contact of any kind between a helping professional — doctor, therapist, teacher, priest, professor, police officer, lawyer, etc. — and a client/patient.
Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), previously referred to as multiple personality disorder (MPD), is a dissociative disorder in which two or more separate and distinct identities (or personalities) control an individual's behavior at different times.
Military sexual trauma (MST) is a technical term that refers to the psychological trauma experienced by military service members, as a result of sexual assault or sexual harassment, as classified by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Take steps right away if you’ve been sexually assaulted.
Get away from the attacker to a safe place as fast as you can. Then call 911 or the police.
Call a friend or family member you trust. You also can call a crisis center (FOCUS 307-746-3630) or a hotline to talk with a counselor. One hotline is the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673). Feelings of shame, guilt, fear, and shock are normal. It is important to get counseling from a trusted professional.
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. You need to be examined, treated for any injuries, and screened for possible sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or pregnancy. The doctor will collect evidence using a rape kit for fibers, hairs, saliva, semen, or clothing that the attacker may have left behind.
You or the hospital staff can call the police from the emergency room to file a report.
Ask the hospital staff about possible support groups you can attend right away.
Where else can I go for help?
If you are sexually assaulted, it is not your fault. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or support. Help is available. You can call these organizations:
National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or 1-800-787-3224 (TDD)
National Sexual Assault Hotline 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)
FOCUS Newcastle, WY 307-746-3630
There are many organizations and hotlines in every state and territory. These crisis centers and agencies work hard to stop assaults and help victims. You can find contact information for these organizations at http://www.womenshealth.gov/violence/state/. You also can obtain the numbers of shelters, counseling services, and legal assistance in your phone book.
How can I protect myself from being sexually assaulted?
There are things you can do to reduce your chances of being sexually assaulted. Follow these tips from the National Crime Prevention Council.
Be aware of your surroundings — who’s out there and what’s going on.
Walk with confidence. The more confident you look, the stronger you appear.
Don’t let drugs or alcohol cloud your judgment.
Be assertive — don’t let anyone violate your space.
Trust your instincts. If you feel uncomfortable in your surroundings, leave.
Don’t prop open self-locking doors.
Lock your door and your windows, even if you leave for just a few minutes.
Watch your keys. Don’t lend them. Don’t leave them. Don’t lose them. And don’t put your name and address on the key ring.
Watch out for unwanted visitors. Know who’s on the other side of the door before you open it.
Be wary of isolated spots, like underground garages, offices after business hours, and apartment laundry rooms.
Avoid walking or jogging alone, especially at night. Vary your route. Stay in well-traveled, well-lit areas.
Have your key ready to use before you reach the door — home, car, or work.
Park in well-lit areas and lock the car, even if you’ll only be gone a few minutes.
Drive on well-traveled streets, with doors and windows locked.
Never hitchhike or pick up a hitchhiker.
Keep your car in good shape with plenty of gas in the tank.
In case of car trouble, call for help on your cellular phone. If you don’t have a phone, put the hood up, lock the doors, and put a banner in the rear mirror that says, “Help. Call police.”
How can I help someone who has been sexually assaulted?
Call FOCUS 307-746-3630
You can help someone who is abused or who has been assaulted by listening and offering comfort. Go with her or him to the police, the hospital, or to counseling. Reinforce the message that she or he is not at fault and that it is natural to feel angry and ashamed.
More Information . . .
For more information on sexual assault, contact the National Women’s Health Information Center at 800-994-9662 or the following organizations: