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Saturday, November 19, 2016

IF YOU ARE A SEX WORKER IN NEVADA AND RAPED . . .

If you are raped - this is a good hotline https://centers.rainn.org/

But after having been raped myself many times now, and after answering over 500,000 calls on our hotline over 30 years now, I can tell you the FIRST thing you need to do when raped is to resist the urge to clean yourself up.  IMMEDIATELY call 911 and allow them to bring out an ambulance and a rape kit.  Right where you are.  The police can gather photos, evidence, samples, package up clothing, get witness statements, etc.

This is if you CAN call 911 immediately.  If you are not safe where you are, or if your rapist was a cop, sheriff, or other law enforcement person so you are afraid to call the police about being raped then again DO NOT SHOWER and go to the nearest ER.  Tell them you were raped.  They will give you an examination and take samples.  You might have DNA under your fingernails.  There could be teeth marks you need to have photographed.   But the first thing to do when raped is to try and capture the evidence.

DO NOT WORRY ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT YOU'RE GOING TO PROSECUTE YET.  You may feel tempted to want to wait until you decide and then get the medical exam.  No - get the exam first.  Making a police report is NOT the same as "filing a case" against your rapist.  All a police report is that you do at first is to make report about the scene, evidence, maybe get witness statements, get photos, package up DNA samples, etc.  Calling the police is NOT "filing a case".  The police are just gathering evidence and your statements at first.  


The actual CRIMINAL CASE against your rapist is something that has to be decided upon by the prosecutor.  Understand there is a difference between a CRIMINAL case and a CIVIL lawsuit.  A criminal complaint is to have him arrested, convicted and hopefully go to jail or prison for what he did to you.  The evidence in a criminal case is limited to things like DNA, photos of your injuries, torn clothing, crime scene photos, and that sort of real evidence.  The only witnesses they will care about in a criminal case is someone who saw you being raped, heard you being raped, or maybe heard him confessing to having raped you.  All you get out of a criminal filing is the satisfaction he's being stopped from raping another person and he's going to jail or prison.

You do not need to be HARMED to be raped.  The legal definition of rape is when you technically "can't consent".  That's why if you're a juvenile you can't legally consent to sex so even if you said "yes" then he is guilty of rape.  If you were on drugs and didn't understand what was asked of you - you might not have been of the mental capacity to say yes.  If you were in fear for your life if you said no that can be considered rape.  If you were unconscious and therefore didn't consent - that's rape.  But you do not need to be physically harmed in order to have that be considered a rape.

All a rape means is that you either did not, or could not, consent to the sex.  


A civil case for rape is where you are going into a courtroom and asking a judge or jury to decide if you were damaged.   Civil cases allow for what's called "discovery" meaning he will have to answer questions you ask him, he may have to supply you with names of people who were at the party, or tell you what was in that pill he gave you, or otherwise provide you with more evidence and information.  You can win money in a civil case or demand something of him.  For example you might win an award and he may be forced to go to counseling for impulse control.

Other people can join with you on a civil case to form a "class action".  Let's say he raped five of you.  If you all five file against him then that's a class action lawsuit.  If Dennis Hof were to have a civil lawsuit filed against him for rape - then he could be asked to deliver over to Jennifer, or her lawyer, the names of every woman who has been in his employ for the last 4 years (rape cases have to be filed within 4 years or it expires on a criminal level - but you have only 2 years within which to file for a civil lawsuit).  Those women would then get a subpena which would then ask them if they'd been raped by Dennis Hof.  If they say yes and they decide to "join" the lawsuit - then you have what's called a "class action" lawsuit.

You do not get a lawyer to defend you in a criminal case unless you're being charged back on a criminal level.  You do however have the prosecutor behind you if you're filing a criminal case.  But keep in mind if you file against someone for rape either criminally or civilly, or both - they can turn around and sue you on a civil level for things like "defamation".

This is why you should NOT be out on social media yelling "so and so raped me" when this person has not made a public confession yet.  Otherwise, they could sue you for defamation, slander, libel, etc.  And unless you could prove what you're saying is true - they'd win!  Now you CAN ASK "was anyone treated badly by Dennis Hof?".  But if you say someone did something to you in public, or online, in print, etc., then you'd better be able to prove it or YOU could be the one winding up sued.

Because the prosecutor MAY NOT go forward with prosecuting your rapist.  There may not be enough evidence against them and it would be a waste of time and money for the court.  So also understand that just because you FILE against someone does not mean THE COURT FILES.  If the prosecutor feels you don't have enough evidence, if he thinks you're not going to show up at the trial to testify and waste their time, there could be 100 reasons - but they don't have to file a CASE just because you filed a REPORT. 


The same with a civil lawsuit.  You can file anything against anyone.  But their side will ask you to produce your proof and case.  If they feel you don't have enough evidence or proof - they may dismiss your whole lawsuit.

You may not want to file because you may think you won't get a fair trial.  If I was to file a rape charge or suit against Dennis yes it would have to be filed in Pahrump if that's the county where it took place in.  But I would not think I'd get a fair trial in Pahrump.  In fact, I've been in Pahrump, Beatty, Tonopah, Mound, Las Vegas, or wherever you were raped.  Where you were raped, or allege you were raped is where you file the cases.

Now let's say this guy is best friends with the one judge in that town.  You won't get a fair trial.  The prosecutor in a criminal case, and an attorney in a civil case, feel you won't get a fair trial.  You can file for what's called a "change of venue".  I'd had to do it when hearing cases in these small towns with one judge who got big campaign donations from the person I'm going up against.

So don't not file because you think you "won't stand a chance" because they might be friends with the judge.   If that's the case, then there's probably a way to  "change the venue". 


Do not feel rape counselors and centers in Nevada will hold against you that you're a sex worker.  They won't.  In fact, they get their money based on how many people they help.  You help them by contacting them and reaching out.

Many of our members have been raped also.  We are treated "differently" than when a non-sex worker is raped.  In fact, most courts view it as "theft of services" rather than "rape".

So if you need someone to talk to who understands, please reach out to www.sexworkersanonymous.com


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