We can’t fully imagine what it means to try and recover from sexual assault. What we do know, though, is that it’s a process that can often be helped with good therapy, guidance, and appropriate care. These are often things that victims of sexual assault lack the resources to pursue. The criminal legal process does nothing to help with that.
On the civil side, though, sexual assault is handled under personal injury law. The purpose of personal injury law is to get victims the compensation that they deserve. Money isn’t a cure, of course, but we’ve seen it help the process along as sexual assault victims seek healing. At Cheney Galluzzi & Howard, we can help you seek restitution and justice. What sets us apart, though, is that we make sure that you are treated with the compassion and respect that you deserve throughout the process.
Broadly, sexual assault is any kind of sexual contact made without the consent of the Broomfield, CO victim. This can include sexual acts initiated by force, coercion, or manipulation. It also includes any sexual acts with those who cannot legally give their consent to such actions, such as:
If you have questions related to your situation, a lawyer can help clarify things.
The offending individual should be held accountable but, in many cases, they are not the only ones who should be held liable. Far too often, sexual assault occurs as a result of institutional failure. These institutions can include, but are not limited to:
Many of these institutions that invite people to their locations and facilities have a responsibility to provide security and perform a reasonable level of diligence in protecting their guests. They also have a duty to take any accusations seriously and investigate them, but that isn’t always what happens. Some institutions that could have a claim filed against them include:
Your lawyer can investigate your case and help you understand who may bear some responsibility for what happened.
We know that the last thing those who are recovering from sexual assault need is another hardship. We also know that the prospect of filing a personal injury claim against those responsible for the assault may feel like a tremendous burden. That’s why our approach to sexual assault cases is to minimize the anxiety that the victim might feel while ruthlessly pursuing everything that they deserve. We are here to investigate your case for you, stand up for your claim, and put together an argument for what damages you are owed. We can do all that while trying to minimize your involvement and ensure that you are treated with understanding and compassion when you are involved.
A: You can always file a claim against the perpetrator of the assault. It is possible, though, that the responsibility for the situation extends beyond that point. If the assault is connected with an institution of some sort, then it is possible that the institution may be partially responsible. The details of each unique case shape the potential liability but, in general, there is a responsibility for places that invite people to visit to offer some level of protection from harm. Everywhere from workplaces to nursing homes to ridesharing companies have this duty. Therefore, depending on the particulars of the case, there may be an institution that should also be held to account.
A: Sexual assault is sexual contact for which consent has not been given. This could mean that the contact was forced upon the individual through physical, emotional, or psychological means. It may also mean that the victim is someone who was not able to legally provide consent, as is the case with the intoxicated or with minors.
A: The criminal trial is how the perpetrator of the assault may be found criminally guilty. It will also determine sentencing as related to jail time or other punishment. Civil cases are designed to give victims some restitution for what they’ve undergone. Obviously, money can’t take away what someone has suffered. The damages that can be granted in a civil trial, though, are meant to ease some of the stress and anxiety so that the victims can work toward healing. In cases where there was an institutional failure, it can also be the catalyst that provokes changes, hopefully helping to prevent others from suffering similar harm.
A: In short, proving sexual assault will come down to the evidence. As your lawyer, it’s going to be our job to gather evidence and put it together in a way that shows that the assault occurred. Often, the strongest type of evidence we have to work with, short of video footage, is going to be physical evidence. Things like rape kit results and photos of injuries can often be critical to proving the assault. Unfortunately, this kind of evidence can be lost if it is not collected quickly. Bruises will fade, and cuts will heal.
Therefore, if you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, the first thing they should do is get to a medical facility quickly. We understand that, in many cases, this can be hard to do. However, the evidence gathered can help the police do their job and your attorney protect your rights. It’s the greatest chance of seeing that justice is executed.
In cases of sexual assault, a technical understanding of the law is not enough. A skillful lawyer who can make a strong case in court is not enough. You deserve those things, but you deserve more as well. You deserve a lawyer who can approach the situation with the care, sensitivity, and respect that it deserves.
At Cheney Galluzzi & Howard, that is what we do. We are here to handle your case in a way that works for you. Compassion and empathy guide how we navigate your situation. We want to see you on the path back to peace and finding enjoyment in life. We can only hope to have a part in supporting you through that process. If you are ready to discuss your situation with us, contact us today.