Do I have to report to the police?
It is entirely your decision to report* sexual abuse/assault to the police. It is not uncommon to have mixed feelings or fear about making a police report. SSAIC can provide you with information and options for reporting.
If you do not want to make a report now, it is helpful to write down everything that you can remember about what happened to you. There is no statute of limitations on reporting sexual assault—you can report it to the police at any point in the future.
If you have agreed to a forensic exam at the hospital, the police will automatically be called to take your statement.
*Exceptions: if a child is in need of protection, you have a duty to report to the Ministry of Social Services.
Where can I make my police report?
If the assault took place within the city of Saskatoon, your report must be made to the Saskatoon Police. The Saskatoon police station is open from 7:00am-11:00pm for reporting a crime.
If the assault took place outside of the city, contact the appropriate RCMP detachment.
If you are not physically or emotionally well enough to come to the police station, the police will make other arrangements.
I can barely remember what happened…is it worth reporting?
It is completely normal for survivors of a traumatic experience to have difficulty remembering things in chronological order, or to remember a lot of details. (If you’re interested in the science of trauma, this is a helpful video.) It may help you to write down what you can remember before you make the report.
Remember, there is no statute of limitation on reporting sexual assault, so you can make the report at any time in the future, but it is more difficult to investigate and find evidence the more time has passed.
Making your statement to the police
A statement is the record of the victim’s complaint. It includes everything s/he can remember about the assault. The statement is the basis of the police investigation and may be used later in court, so it is important that you answer every question honestly and to the best of your ability.
The police will need to know:
- What happened
- Where and when
- If you do/do not know the attacker, and a description if possible
- Whether a weapon was used
- What the attacker(s) said and did
All questions should be answered accurately and clearly.
Some of the questions may seem strange and embarrassing; however, the police need all the details of the incident. If there are things you cannot remember, it’s ok to say, “I don’t remember” or “I’m not sure”.
Identification of the Suspect
If you do not know the attacker, the police may ask you to:
- Look at photographs of possible assailants
- View a line-up of people whose features may be similar to those of the assailant
- Describe the attacker’s features to an artist who will make a drawing from the description