Victims are encouraged to call Campus Police or their local law enforcement agency for crime investigation, referral and/or transport for medical treatment and referral to crisis counseling and legal advocacy.
Reporting a rape or other act of sexual violence does not commit you to filing charges. When you make your report, have someone go with you. You can go the next day, but the sooner the better. Rarely do rapists attack one person only; they get away with it and so, they continue to do it.
If you are on-campus, call Campus Police by dialing:
- 4444 from any campus phone
- (949) 582-4444 from your cell phone.
If you are off-campus, call 911 or the police/sheriff department responsible for the area where the assault occurred.
The Victim should make every attempt to preserve any physical evidence of the assault.
- This may include not showering or disposing of any damaged clothing or other items that are present during or after the assault.
- Do not wash, comb, or clean any part of your body.
- Do not douche.
- Do not change clothes if possible.
- Do not destroy clothes if you do change. Hospital staff will need to collect evidence.
- Do not touch or change anything at the scene of the assault. Local police or sheriff authorities will need to collect evidence.
- Go to the nearest hospital emergency room, or if on-campus, to the Student Health Center as soon as possible whether or not you plan to file charges. The Student Health Center is not an "evidence collection" site but will assist you in securing the care you need. You need to be examined, treated for any injuries, and screened for possible sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and pregnancy. The emergency room doctor will collect evidence using a rape kit for fibers, hairs, saliva, or semen that the attacker may have left behind. You or the hospital staff can call the police from the emergency room to file a report if you have not already done so. Ask the hospital staff about possible support groups you can attend right away.
- Call a friend or family member you trust. You also can call a crisis center or a hotline to talk with a counselor. Feelings of shame, guilt, fear, and shock are normal. It is important to get counseling from a trusted professional.
Information and Resources
It is the use of sexual actions and words that are unwanted by and/or harmful to another person. Some common terms that are used interchangeably with sexual violence are sexual abuse and sexual violence.
Sexual Consent: Free and active agreement, given equally by both partners, to engage in a specific sexual activity. Consent is not present when either partner:
- is below the legal age of consent
- fears the consequences of not consenting (including use of force)
- feels threatened or intimidated
- is coerced (see below)
- says no, either verbally or physically (e.g., crying, kicking or pushing away)
- has disabilities that prevent the person from making an informed choice
- is incapacitated by alcohol or drugs
- lacks full knowledge or information of what is happening
- is not an active participant in the activity
Sexual Coercion: Compelling someone to submit to an unwanted sexual act by intimidating, threatening, misusing authority, manipulating, tricking, or bribing with actions and words. When a person is coerced, she or he has not given consent.
Specific Forms of Sexual Violence
Dating Violence: Abuse or mistreatment that occurs in either heterosexual or same-sex relationships. It may take place at any point in the dating process — when two people first meet and become interested in one another, on their first date, during their courtship, once they have been involved with each other for some time, or after their relationship has ended.
Intimate Partner Violence: Physical, sexual, or psychological harm by a current or former partner or spouse. This type of violence can occur among heterosexual or same-sex couples and does not require sexual intimacy.
Rape: Unwanted, coerced and/or forced sexual penetration. The perpetrator may penetrate the victim's vagina, mouth, or anus, either with a body part or another object. The victim also may be forced to penetrate the perpetrator's vagina, mouth, or anus.
Sexual Harassment: Unwanted verbal sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other visual, verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment can also include stalking, voyeurism ("peeping toms"), exhibitionism/exposing, and obscene comments and phone calls. Sexual harassment can occur in the workplace, school, and other settings (such as public transportation, shopping malls, community events, social gatherings, places of worship, heath care facilities) and can create an intimidating or hostile environment for the victim. The perception of the victim, not the intent of the harasser, determines whether particular words or actions are harassing.
Sexual Violation: Use of sexual contact behaviors that are unwanted by and/or harmful to another person, but do not involve penetration. This can include touching or rubbing against a non-consenting person in public ("frottage"), forced masturbation, and non-consensual touching of the breasts, buttocks, genitals, and other sexualized body parts by another person.
Stalking: While legal definitions of stalking vary from one jurisdiction to another, a good working definition of stalking is a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear. A stalker is someone who willfully, maliciously and repeatedly follows or harasses another (victim) and who makes a credible threat with the intent to place the victim or victim's immediate family in fear for their safety. According to California Penal Code 646.9, the victim does not have to prove that the stalker had the intent to carry out the threat.
Saddleback College recognizes that sexual assault is a serious issue and does not tolerate sexual assault in any form. The College will investigate all allegations of sexual assault occurring on-campus or at off-campus grounds or facilities maintained by the district and take appropriate disciplinary, criminal or legal action. If the sexual assault did not occur on campus controlled property but the alleged assailant is a Saddleback College student or employee, the victim should report the incident to the Vice President for Student Services as soon as possible.
Any student or employee suspected of committing a sex offense of any kind is subject to both criminal prosecution by the State and disciplinary action under district and college policies and regulations. Campus disciplinary action can be initiated even if criminal charges are not pursued.
Disciplinary actions may be imposed on individual students, student organizations and/or any College faculty or staff responsible for any act of sexual violence. The accuser and the accused are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during a campus disciplinary proceeding and both shall be informed of the outcome. College sanctions following campus disciplinary procedures, detailed in Administrative Regulation 5401, depend on the outcome and may range from suspension to expulsion.
Every effort will be made to criminally prosecute perpetrators of sexual assaults.
Administrative Regulations 5404: Sexual and Other Assaults on Campus
If the alleged assailant is a Saddleback College student or the assault occurred on campus or District property, report the assault to Campus Police (949) 582-4585 whether or not you plan to file charges. Reporting a rape or other act of sexual violence does not commit you to filing charges. When you make your report, have someone go with you. You can go the next day, but the sooner the better. Rarely do rapists attack one person only; they get away with it and so, they continue to do it.
Whether the assault occurred on-campus or off-campus, if the alleged assailant is a Saddleback College student, faculty or staff member, file a report with Campus Police, the Vice President for Student Services and with local authorities.
Pressing charges can be a complicated process and the decision to file charges may be difficult. Each person must decide for themselves, based on their own circumstances. If you need support to make this decision, campus counselors are available in the Student Health Center (949) 582-4606.
Do not blame yourself. Victims of sexual assault experience a state that resembles acute grief. Their basic feelings of wholeness, strength, trust, self-control and self-confidence are often lost. The victim’s attempts to stop the attacker did not work — they were powerless. This feeling of powerlessness can be devastating to the victim. Many are unable to talk about their experience unless they are directly asked about it. The trauma of being victimized is often long-lasting. Although each person reacts differently, there are some reactions that are common.
These reactions include:
- Shock, Disbelief, Numbness, Withdrawal
- Preoccupation with thoughts and feelings about the assault
- Unwanted memories, flashbacks, and/or nightmares
- Intense emotions: anger, fear, anxiety, depression
- Physical symptoms: sleep disturbance, headaches, stomach aches
- Inability to concentrate, lower grades
- Loss of interest in sex
- Fears about safety
- Feelings of guilt and shame
Be compassionate with yourself. Even if your body responded sexually to the attacker, it does not mean you "enjoyed" the experience or that it is your fault. Even if you believe you were naïve, not cautious, or even foolish, it is not your fault. You have been through a trauma and need to make space for your own emotional, physical, psychological and spiritual healing. You may be overwhelmed by many different emotions - fear, grief, guilt, shame, rage. It is important to seek support. There are many different options, such as talking with a campus counselor, joining a victims group or talking with a friend. People who receive counseling tend to recover from their experiences faster and with fewer lasting effects than those who get no help. Recovery from sexual assaults means that, over time, you are not thinking about the assault and your emotions are not dominated by it. You will be able to envision a positive, happy and successful future for yourself.
- Domestic Violence Hotline: (714) 935-7956
- Rape Hotline: (800) 585-6231
- Sexual Assault/Rape Crisis, Orange County
- 24-hour Hotline: (714) 957-2737
- 24-hour Hotline : (949) 831-9110
- LGBTQ Hotline: (888) 843-4564
- Nat’l Sexual Assault Hotline: (800) 656-4673
- North Orange County: (714) 647-7000
- South Orange County: (949) 770-6011
- In all cases of emergency, call 911
Therapy Referrals and other Victim Services
- SAVS - Irvine: (949) 752-1971
- SAVS - Santa Ana: (714) 834-4317
- LGBTQ - Information /Referrals: (714) 534-0862
National Center for Victims of Crime, Abuse, Rape
- (800) 394-2255
- TTY/pD: (800) 211-7996
Campus Contact Numbers
- Campus Police: (949) 582-4585 / 24 Hour Emergency (949) 582-4444
- Student Health Center: (949) 582-4606
- Office of the Vice President for Student Services: (949) 582-4566
- Human Options: (949) 737-5242
- Interval House: (714) 891-8121
- Laura's House: (949) 361-3775