Sexual Assault

  1. Non-consensual Sexual Intercourse

Non-consensual sexual intercourse is defined as rape, sexual assault, unwanted penetration of part of another person or subjecting a person to sexual intercourse against without that person’s consent, including by use of coercion, threat, or physical force.This includes sexual penetration of any kind by any object, however slight.In the State of Arkansas (Code 5-14-101, 103, 110) there are five statutory levels/categories of sexual assault – rape, sexual assault first, second, and third degrees, and sexual indecency with a child.

  1. Non-consensual Sexual Contact

Non-consensual sexual contact is defined as a form of sexual assault that includes any intentional sexual touching, however slight, using any body part or object, without consent including by use of coercion, threat, or physical force.

Medical Considerations

If the sexual assault occurred within the last 96 hours, survivors can receive medical treatment at the local hospital emergency room and have that visit paid for by the State of Arkansas. If the rape has occurred more than 96 hours ago, it is still very important to seek medical attention.

Reasons for Seeking Medical Care

1. Evaluation and possible treatment for physical injuries the survivor may or may not be aware of.

2. Evaluation and possible treatment for sexually transmitted diseases and/or pregnancy.

3. Collection of evidence for possible future legal proceedings. Evidence should be collected as soon as possible, within 96 hours. There is a very time-limited opportunity to collect evidence. Without physical evidence, legal cases are often weakened.

Before Seeking Medical Attention at the Hospital Emergency Room

1. Someone who can accompany the survivor to the hospital or meet them there—a friend, family member, or an advocate – should be contacted.

2. If possible, the survivor should not shower, bathe, eat, drink, smoke, clean up, urinate, or change their clothes, as this can destroy evidence. If they have already changed, place the clothes that they were wearing in a paper bag and bring to the hospital. If they have already done any of these things, evidence may still be collected. Don’t assume that all evidence has been destroyed.

3. The survivor should take an extra set of clothes to the hospital. The clothing they were wearing at the time of the assault may be collected as evidence.

Paying for the Hospital Visit

Under Arkansas law (through the Sexual Assault Reimbursement Program), the following medical expenses may be paid for by the state if the medical examination/treatment occurs within 96 hours of the assault:

  • Sexual assault evidence collection/examination kit.
  • Physician’s charges for examination.
  • Emergency room charges for sexual assault-related examination or treatment.
  • Laboratory charges associated with sexual assault-related examination.

Follow-up Medical Care

Because there are potential health complications, it is important that the survivor have follow-up care with a physician or healthcare provider after they are examined at the hospital. The survivor will be given instructions for follow-up care before they leave the hospital.

local community assistance to the person who has been sexually assaulted. (Counseling Associates Inc. has a 24-hour hotline at 1-800-844- 2066 for help at any time or the local office number at 754-8610 and the Ozark Rape Crisis Center (ORCC) can be reached by calling 479-754-6869.