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What to Do If You're Accused of Sexual Assault

The #MeToo and Time’s Up movements have inspired women and men of all backgrounds to share stories of being victims of sexual assault or sexual harassment. From celebrities in the entertainment industry and politicians in the U.S. government to athletes in professional sports and executives in the corporate world, there have been a plethora of sexual abuse allegations that have gone unreported for years—until now.

Although there is an ample amount of legitimate cases these movements have brought to light, there are also many false allegations that have destroyed careers, reputations, and lives. Despite the fact that every person is innocent until proven guilty, merely being accused of a sex crime often results in being viewed as guilty by the public and media—without ever stepping foot inside the courtroom.

If you have been accused of sexual assault, you need to take action right away to protect yourself from the negative backlash. You need to build a strong defense to mitigate any possible damage.

Here are some steps to take after being accused of a sex crime:

  1. Understand how much trouble you are in – When some people learn about sexual assault allegations made against them, they simply ignore it or go into denial to reduce the amount of trouble they are actually in. Failure to promptly act can lead to further legal issues.
  2. Hire a lawyer – While it may seem like hiring a criminal defense attorney is an obvious sign of guilt, your lawyer can evaluate your case, determine your available legal options, and protect your rights and freedom throughout the criminal justice process. Try to hire an attorney that has years of experience handling these cases.
  3. Avoid talking to law enforcement – If you are approached by local authorities, they may appear to be on your side by giving you an opportunity to “clear your name.” While you may feel inclined to tell your side of the story, the truth is that the police are actually gathering evidence against you. Before you make any statements to police, speak with your lawyer first or have your lawyer present during questioning.
  4. Gather supporting evidence – First, you could create a timeline, beginning from the first day you interacted with your accuser to the present. Provide as much detail as possible, including dates and locations. Save all texts, e-mails, social media messages, and any other forms of correspondence with the accuser. If there are any witnesses that can help you support your alibi, write down their names and contact information to later ask if they are willing to help with your defense.
  5. Keep a low profile – While you may wish to thwart rumors publicly or through social media, it is wise to only discuss the details of your case with your attorney. Trying to defend yourself can only leave you open to more scrutiny and criticism.

For more information about our legal services in Connecticut, contact Tomeo Sills, LLC today at (844) 913-7747 and schedule a free consultation today.