A recent news story highlighted a rise in crime on the University of Missouri campus. Although this story was limited to the University of Missouri’s campus, we all know crime can happen when we least expect it. With this recent news, it’s worthwhile to consider what someone should do if they are a victim of a crime.
If you are the victim of an assault, mugging, robbery, or other violent or non-violent crime on a parking lot, at a bar, on a campus, on the sidewalk, or in any other private or public area, there are immediate steps you should take to ensure your safety:
- Report the incident to law enforcement immediately. Try to share all of the details with the officer about the encounter.
- Have law enforcement call emergency personnel. Even if you believe you are okay medically, it’s better to be safe and take all precautions.
- If you are able, notify the property owner of the assault and ask if there is video surveillance available. Video surveillance and/or witnesses statements should be obtained as soon as possible! This will assist in any prosecution efforts.
- Take photos and/or videos of your injuries.
- Follow up with law enforcement and/or a prosecuting authority frequently. Many prosecutor’s offices have victim advocates whose sole job is to assist victims of crimes.
- If you have medical bills or are having difficulty with law enforcement, or need to know what your rights are, contact an attorney.
Although we are not qualified to tell you what to do during an assault, mugging, or robbery, or how to defend yourself, we do know there are steps you should take following the event that will protect your rights and abilities to go after the criminals and other persons responsible for any injuries or property loss you suffered. Get in touch if you’d like to learn more.