What to do if you are a complainant of sexual misconduct

  • Find a friend or RA for support.
  • Get medical attention.  A physical examination will help to assure that any injuries will be identified and treated and that sexually transmitted disease testing will be provided and followed up.
  • Evidence may be obtained and kept in case the complainant decides to pursue criminal charges.  Do not bathe, shower, douche or change clothes before the exam.
  • Report the crime.  The decision to report is the complainant's.  There are several ways to take action, criminal prosecution or through the university's disciplinary system or both. Contact the University Police (864.294.2111) or Student Life (864.294.2202).
  • Victim's assistance is also available in the local community through the Julie Valentine Center for Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Recovery.
  • If you are a complainant of an off-campus assault, you should report this to the local police authority having jurisdiction.  If you want assistance from the University Police Department with this process, a Furman police officer will accompany you upon request.  We provide these types of support services and have a complainant's advocate in the department.
  • Seek counseling.  Support through a trained counselor can help the complainant understand and work through the trauma.
  • The Division of Student Life is responsible for university disciplinary procedures following a report of rape or sexual assault between students.  Both the complainant and respondent are entitled to have an advisor present at all hearings and proceedings.  Both parties shall be informed of the outcome of any disciplinary hearing.  Possible sanctions for being found guilty include but are not limited to, expulsion, suspension, probation, counseling and other sanctions as deemed appropriate by the hearing body.  The complainant's academic and living situation will be changed upon request if reasonably available.

How to help a friend who has been raped or sexually assaulted...

  • Listen. Don't be judgmental.
  • Be patient. Remember, it will take your friend some time to deal with the crime.
  • Help to empower your friend. Rape and sexual assault are crimes that take away an individual's power.  It is important not to compound this experience by putting pressure on your friend to do things that he or she is not ready to do yet.
  • Encourage your friend to report the rape or sexual assault to University Police.  If your friend has questions about the criminal justice process, talking with someone on the National Sexual Assault Hotline, 1.800.656.HOPE, can help.
  • Let your friend know that professional help is available through the Counseling Center.
  • If your friend is willing to seek medical attention or report the assault, offer to accompany him or her wherever s/he needs to go (infirmary, hospital, University Police, etc.)
  • Realize that only your friend can make the decision to get help.

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