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Sexual Assault Support

Medical Forensics Exams for Victims of Assault

Northern Arizona Care and Services After Assault (NACASA)

A Safe Place. A Healing Place.

Northern Arizona Care and Services After Assault (NACASA) at North Country HealthCare is a safe place for adult and adolescent victims of sexual assault and domestic violence strangulation to go for help and to explore their options after an assault. Examinations are performed by Forensic Nurse Examiners who are specially trained to provide care immediately following an assault. NACASA examiners have received special training to provide comprehensive care to sexual assault victims and may provide expert testimony in court if a case goes to trial.

NACASA Provides

  • medical/forensic examinations in a calm, quiet and confidential setting
  • medication to prevent sexually transmitted infections
  • emergency contraception
  • survivor support services, including referrals to mental health counseling, support groups and victim advocacy

Sexual Assault FAQs

Q: What is sexual assault?

A: Sexual Assault is any type of sexual contact without consent between two or more people regardless of their gender or marital status.

Q: What is consent?

A: Consent is when both parties verbally agree to participate in a sexual act. If at any time one of the participants says, “NO”, then there is no consent.

Q: What are the laws in Arizona about sexual assault?

A: ARS 13-1406

  • A person commits sexual assault by intentionally or knowingly engaging in sexual intercourse or oral sexual contact with any person without consent of such person.

ARS 13-1401

  • The victim is incapable of consent by reason of mental disorder, mental defect, drugs, alcohol, sleep or any other similar impairment of cognition and such condition is known or should have reasonably been known to the defendant.

If you have lost consciousness, feel sore or uncomfortable after a date or have a sense that something happened – seek help. Date rape drugs like alcohol, GHB, Rohypnol and other drugs can cause memory loss, leaving a victim at risk for sexual assault.

Q: Why is a medical/forensic examination needed?

A: Sexual assault is traumatic. You may be in shock and unaware of injuries. The forensic examiner will document any injuries, creating a medical record of what happened to you. She will collect physical evidence from your body. You will receive treatment to prevent sexually transmitted infections. To be effective, medical treatment should be received as soon as possible.

Q: What if I am not sure I want to report my assault to the police? Should I still have the medical examination? 

A: Yes. Even if you are unsure about whether you want to report the assault to the police or participate in prosecution, you should have evidence collected as soon as possible. By having the examination done as soon as possible, evidence can be collected and stored, keeping your options open if you choose to report in the future.

Q: What should I do if I’m sexually assaulted?

  • Find a safe environment – anywhere away from the attacker. Ask a trusted friend to stay with you for support
  • Know that what happened was not your fault, and that you should do what is best for you
  • Seek medical forensic help quickly. Get assurance that your body is okay and treatment for any injuries or infections
  • If possible, do not shower, wipe, douche, brush your teeth, eat, drink, or smoke; however, if you do any of these things you may still receive an exam
  • If possible keep whatever clothes you have on. If you have already changed your clothes, bring whatever clothes you were wearing to the exam in a paper bag
  • Bring along a change of clothing to North Country HealthCare – the clothing you are wearing may need to be taken for evidence
  • You can request a medical forensic examination from NACASA whether or not you are reporting to law enforcement

Rape is never your fault, and it is never too late to ask for help!

Q: What should I do if someone I know has been sexually assaulted?

  • Believe them
  • Accompany them to make a report
  • Keep their confidentiality

Resources

  • NACASA at North Country HealthCare – 928.522.9460. 2920 N. Fourth St. Flagstaff, AZ 86004
  • 24 Hour Crisis Line, Coconino, Navajo and Apache Counties – 928.527.1900 or 1.877.634.2723
    • Exams are available in Flagstaff. Holbrook, Show Low & Springerville
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline – 1.800.656.HOPE (4673)
  • To report to your local police department call 911

Sexual Assault Survivor’s Support Groups

These group are for sexual assault survivors who are 18 years of age and older. They are led by  licensed professional counselors with specialized training in sexual assault and post-traumatic stress. Together we provide a safe and healing environment for survivors. Groups are free – no cost to attend! For more information, call 928.522.9460.

*Please note, NACASA’s support groups will continue via Zoom until further notice:

  • Regular support group: 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month at 5:30 p.m.
  • NAU support group: 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m.

Please call 928.522.9460 for information on attending a support group via Zoom.

 

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