Do the Police Need Evidence to Charge someone in a Sexual Assault Case?

January 31, 2024    criminaldefencelawyersperthwa
Do the Police Need Evidence to Charge someone in a Sexual Assault Case?

The Australian legal system considers sexual assaults as serious crimes. Any person can report an attempt or event of sexual assault to the police if they have been threatened, forced, pressured, or tricked into a sexual act against their will, and the legal system can take action. However, the process is emotionally and legally taxing, and the assistance of a sexual assault lawyer is recommended in the total process.

Australian legal system receives 85 sexual assault reports daily, and as per research, at least 33.3% of young people have experienced unwanted sex in their lives. Relatedly, victims of non-consensual penetrative sex, or rape, must report the incident to the authorities to see the perpetrator face the justice system – but they will also need to be ready to experience intense emotional turmoil.

What are sexual harassment and its forms?

As per the best Perth criminal lawyers, federal and state legislation defines sexual assault as unsolicited and undesirable sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and behavior of a sexual nature. A reasonable person may find these conducts or circumstances offensive, humiliating, and intimidating all circumstances – meaning the law can consider them to be threatening even if it wasn’t directed at you and constitute a case of sexual assault.
Some examples of sexual assaults’ diverse forms are given below:

  • Staring or leering.
  • Evocative comments and jokes
  • Unsolicited touching, hugging, and kissing.
  • Undesirable invitations to go out on dates or requests for sexually explicit screensavers, posters, or pictures
  • Pointless familiarity
  • Insensitive questions about someone’s private life or body
  • Foul language and mocking based on your gender
  • Visiting sexually explicit internet sites
  • Sending sexually explicit SMS messages or emails.
  • Behaviors constituting an offence under criminal law – such as indecent exposure, physical assault, sexual assault, following, and lewd communications.

However, you should be careful about pressing sexual assault charges. As the best lawyer for sexual assault will tell you – any invited, consensual, reciprocated, or mutual activity may fall under sexual interaction but not assault. However, it can become sexual assault if one of the involved parties withdraws consent or invitation. So, if one employee wants to stop the relationship from going forward and the other doesn’t – then any of the acts mentioned earlier can be considered sexual assault.

What is the police’s job?

Being a victim of sexual assault is a harrowing experience, but going to Perth criminal lawyers as quickly as possible increases the likelihood of justice and action. Police can arrest an individual, but the court will decide on the penalty. Moreover, the police won’t proceed with the case without insufficient evidence. Therefore, the police or first legal defence investigating alleged sexual offences work in a four-step approach:

  • They primarily protect the victim-survivors and support them.
  • They are duty-bound to investigate the report in-depth and gather evidence.
  • After that, they determine the occurrence of crime and gather evidence.
  • Finally, they identify and catch the perpetrators and present them before the court.
  • The police will also help the complainants (the victim-survivors) to draft their statements and provide evidence

Common proof the police will collect

The sexual assault lawyer will present their case in court based on evidence, and the police will add to the list. However, the court will have the final say in determining the crime or penalty award. However, the process of evidence collection will commonly work, as given below:

Investigators started to collect evidence against a person who claimed to be a sexual assaulter. Some proof may have been complied with by medical professionals before the suspected sexual assault was reported to the police. The police use something called a ‘rape kit’ – which is utilized to gather DNA evidence and prove the non-consent of victims

The police will also want to collect the suspected victim’s apparel, bedsheets, and other possessions that may act as evidence for the alleged assault, depending on the time passed. They may also subject the person to blood or other medical tests to check for anything undesirable in their systems. The test results or other items will be submitted for forensic analysis and often used as lead evidence

The investigators will look for specific evidence that proves the lack of consent or violence between the supposed victim and the supposed assaulter. They can also gather other physical evidence that can be interpreted to assist the prosecution’s case

Conclusion

While the requirement for evidence in a sexual assault case may vary based on jurisdiction, it is generally essential for law enforcement to gather sufficient evidence to support a charge. The credibility of the victim’s testimony, physical evidence, and witness statements often play crucial roles in building a strong case. However, the legal process acknowledges the sensitivity of sexual assault cases, recognizing the challenges victims may face in providing immediate evidence. Sexual assault cases carry a stigma for the victim, and the best lawyer for sexual assault will handle the case with appropriate consideration. It is best to report any incident to the police quickly and preserve any evidence if possible.

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