WHAT IS A SEXUAL ASSAULT FORENSIC EXAM?
A forensic exam can be completed on a survivor of sexual assault up to seven days after an assault. Any longer than 7 days and evidence becomes too difficult to obtain. The exam consists of a head to toe evaluation, photographs of injuries (if any) and swabbing of affected areas. Typical exams last anywhere from 2-6 hours, and goes at a pace the survivor feels comfortable with. For CSU students this exam takes place at Poudre Valley Hospital on Lemay. The staff at PVH are highly trained in this sensitive area and do an excellent job answering any questions that come up.
Advocates from our Victim Assistance Team will accompany (day or night) any CSU survivor to the hospital and wait while the exam is completed. They are there for emotional support and to answer any questions about resources outside of the exam.
Senate Bill 128 was signed into law on March 30, 2015. Colorado will offers three reporting options for adult survivors of sexual assault. Please note that these reporting options do not apply for minors (C.R.S. 19-3-304) and at-risk elders (C.R.S. 18-6.5-108), due to other mandatory reporting obligations. For individuals who do not fall under these two statutes, survivors have three distinct reporting options at the time of receiving medical care:
- Law Enforcement Report: When a victim chooses to obtain a medical forensic exam and chooses to participate in the criminal justice system at that time.
- Medical Report: A victim chooses to obtain a medical forensic exam but at that time chooses to not participate in the criminal justice system. Evidence and information to law enforcement is released with victim identifying information. A medical reporting victim can choose to have evidence tested.
- Anonymous Report: A victim chooses to obtain a medical forensic exam but at that time chooses to not participate in the criminal justice system. Evidence and information to law enforcement is released without victim identifying information. An anonymous reporting victim is consenting to evidence storage only.