For information on the Colorado Victim Rights Act and the Federal Clery Act click here.
For information on who to report interpersonal violence to on campus click here.
Reporting an incident of interpersonal violence can be scary. Whether you are the victim/survivor or a friend or family member looking for help, we wanted to give you a sense of what happens once you report the incident to a number of different entities. Please use the links below to learn more about the different processes you could encounter. Call (303) 556-6011 to schedule an appointment with an advocate at the PCA if you still have questions.
If your incident occurred on the Auraria Campus, you might consider reporting to the Auraria Police Department (APD). If you do this, APD will take the initial report from you. For interpersonal violence cases, APD then refers your case to the Denver PD (or another jurisdiction, if necessary) for further investigation. APD will refer you to resources that might be helpful. Under the Clery Act requirement, APD may report your crime information for statistical purposes, but your name and identifying information will not be on this report. APD may also notify The Phoenix Center at Auraria, who will follow up with you. APD will not pursue any conduct proceedings through the campus (such as a disciplinary hearing for the perpetrator if they are a student) unless you want them to. You are always able to remove yourself from the process if you so decide. Keep in mind, in certain situations, the APD is obligated to follow through once you report, but you do not need to be a part of the process if you change your mind.
If the incident occurred off campus, you will need to file a police report with the police agency where the crime occurred (for example, Denver Police Department, Lakewood Police Department). If you decide to report to a police department, a patrol officer or detective will meet with and you will be a asked a series of detailed questions about the incident. If a victim advocate is not provided, you have the right to request that one be provided to support you through this process.
If you wish, the police can also transport you to a hospital. At the hospital, you can get checked for injuries. In cases of sexual assault, a forensic medical exam (SANE or rape kit), can also be completed. Keep in mind however, there may be some costs associated with going to the hospital in addition to the forensic exam. In many cases, Crime Victims Compensation or other financial support services may be available to help cover these costs. Please make sure to consult with a Hospital Social Worker or PCA Advocates to find out your available options.
After talking with the initial officer, a report will then be filed, which will detail the incident. You will be assigned an investigator, who will be briefed on your case, but will most likely want to do a follow up interview the next day, called an “Order In.” During this, you may be asked to repeat many of the things you explained in your initial report and it is likely to be video taped too. At this point, your case will be assigned a case report number, which you should ask for. If the police are able to collect enough information and evidence for your case, it may move into the court system. Throughout this process, the DPD should provide you with a Police Victim’s Advocate, who can help to answer your questions about the process.
If you decide to go the hospital after your assault, a variety of things may happen. First, a physical exam will be done to check on your general health and treat any physical injuries you may have. If you have been sexually assaulted, the staff might test for pregnancy. If you are a female and have been sexually assaulted, you may also be given a SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) exam. This is a forensic examination to collect evidence. This is optional. Hospital staff will notify law enforcement in all cases of interpersonal violence. However, you do not have to speak to the officers if you do not wish. If you choose to do so, you may file a report and any evidence collected during the SANE exam will be submitted to the crime lab for processing. You are allowed to stop the examination at any time or only do certain parts of it, if you wish. The forensic exam is free of charge, but there may be other costs associated with your physical exam and/or treatment. PCA advocates and hospital staff can explain how to get these costs covered. Whether or not you decide to report to the police or not, you may still get a free SANE exam (rape kit) completed. If you do not report to the police, your kit will be assigned a number (which you will be given). The kit will be kept for two years, and if at any time during that period, you decide to report to the police, the evidence from the kit will then be processed. If you never decide to report, the evidence from the kit will be destroyed.
If you decide to report an incident of Interpersonal violence through your school because the perpetrator is also a student, staff or faculty member, a Title IX or conduct investigation will be initiated through the appropriate office. PCA advocates are available to support you through the reporting and investigation process. You can choose not to participate in this process, but the school may have an obligation to investigate regardless. Click on your school logo below to learn more about how to report and incident to your school.
Once a report has been initiated, an investigator should contact you and they may ask you for an interview or written statement. The perpetrator will also be contacted there may be a hearing, at which point you will be given the option of speaking. The process will be kept as private as possible, but it will not be totally confidential. The accused perpetrator will be told who is accusing him/her. A no contact order may be issued to ensure safety during the investigation process.
When handling a case of interpersonal violence, the conduct process will not hold a survivor accountable for underage drinking. If the perpetrator is a staff or faculty member, the outcome of the case is referred to a panel of community members for a decision. You may not know the outcome of the hearing or investigation in this case because it is a confidential part of the employee’s HR record. If the perpetrator is a student, the outcome of the investigation is referred back to the appropriate conduct office. A student conduct hearing is then held and if found responsible, the perpetrator may face probation, suspension, and in extreme cases, dismissal from from school.
If you are experiencing interpersonal violence (IPV) perpetrated by an AHEC staff member, an AHEC Equal Opportunity (EO) Officer will be the person you can report to. If you choose to report an incident to them, they are then obligated to investigate, however it is important to remember that complete confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. Information shared will be limited and on a “need-to-know” basis. After reporting to the AHEC EO Officer, they will have a conversation with the offender to explain the complaint and that in a working environment they must be respectful and that certain behaviors are unacceptable. If the perpetrator is also a student the AHEC EO will contact the institution that the offender is from since most IPV cases will be a violation of the student code of conduct at all institutions. The AHEC EO will also inform the student perpetrator about the possible violation of their institutional student code of conduct.
AHEC only reports to the Auraria Police Department if there is a threatening situation, or a physical assault. If the situation is sexual harassment (jokes, comments, unwanted attention) it is not usually reported to Auraria Police Department unless you would like them to do so. With regards to sexual harassment, AHEC managers and supervisors must inform the AHEC EO about an incident that occurs. AHEC managers and supervisors are given discretion about how to handle the situation although this happens under the supervision of the AHEC EO to ensure the response is appropriate.
If you are a student, the AHEC EO will work with you to contact the institution you are from to ensure you receive support as the complaint is investigated through AHEC. All cases are investigated on their merits. If the perpetrator is an employee solely and not also a student at Auraria, you may not know the outcome of the hearing or investigation because it is a confidential part of the employee’s HR record. All AHEC employees can access the Phoenix Center at Auraria for support and advocacy through the process if they so choose. The PCA services are completely confidential.