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Someone I Supervise Has Been Sexually Assaulted

SAPR - someone I supervise has been sexually assaulted (150416-N-CH661-005)

If reporting directly to you:

  • Ensure the victim is at a safe location away from the perpetrator. If not, take him or her to a safe place.
  • Work with law enforcement to protect the victim from the perpetrator and others acting on the perpetrator's behalf. If the victim’s safety is still threatened, contact military or civilian law enforcement as soon as possible. 
  • Ask if the victim would like to seek medical care. If emergency medical care is required, call 911 or your installation's emergency medical care services. If the victim requires less than emergency care, help him or her get to a medical provider as soon as possible. 
  • Other than safety and health-related questions, try to refrain from asking the victim for details about the incident. Show interest in what the victim says and ask what you can do to help him or her. 
  • Contact the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) at your installation and arrange for the victim to speak with a SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA). If you do not have your SARC’s contact information check with the SAPR command POC or call the DoD Safe Helpline (1-877-995-5247).

If you are informed of a Sexual Assault from a third party:

Follow up with your SARC as well as your chain of command to ensure they are aware of the incident.

Report the crime in your unit only to those persons with a legitimate need to know, e.g., commander, or Command Master Chief (CMC). Do not discuss the matter casually with co-workers, friends or family members. It is critical to protect the privacy of a sexual assault victim and maintain good order and discipline within the unit. 

Report the crime to a Defense Criminal Investigative Organization. Investigators may want to interview you about the incident.

Military members usually have an option about how to report the crime.

  • Unrestricted Reports allow the victim to participate in the military criminal justice process.
  • Restricted Reports are kept confidential, and command and law enforcement are not notified. However, when the victim reports the crime to someone in the chain of command, a Restricted Report is no longer an option. If you are in the individual's chain of command, you must report the matter. However, if you are not in the individual’s chain of command, contact your SARC for further guidance.

If you are dealing with long term follow-up:

Ensure the victim is allowed time to attend necessary appointments, such as with the SAPR VA, counselor or law enforcement. Assist with administrative and logistical arrangements so that the victim can access services and receive care. Again, only inform those with a legitimate need to know why the victim is absent or requires logistical assistance. You can do this in a way that respects the victim’s privacy, such as stating that he or she is handling a personal issue and needs extra time to attend important appointments.

Keep an eye on the victim's safety. A Military Protective Order (MPO) may be issued by command to keep the perpetrator away from the victim. Check with the SARC to see if the victim is eligible for a Civilian Protective Order (CPO) as well.

  • Watch for signs that the perpetrator is violating the terms of the MPO or CPO. If the perpetrator violates either order, notify law enforcement at once. 
  • Consider the victim's input on whether or not he or she desires to be temporarily moved to another unit. 
  • Work with command to determine if the victim's condition warrants redeployment or reassignment, making sure to take the victim’s desires into account.

Ensure the victim is made aware of and encouraged to exercise his or her options during each phase of the medical, investigative and legal processes. Consult your SARC if any issues arise.

Support the victim as he or she goes through the investigation and legal proceedings. Be available to listen, and be patient with the person's duty performance as they recover from being the victim of a crime.

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