What should you do when sexual assault accusations against you become public?
Accusations of sexual assault can have a huge impact on your life. Despite the innocent until proven guilty process within the legal system, the court of public opinion does not operate the same way.
Your employer can fire you. Your spouse can leave you. Your friends can write you off. If your situation becomes public, it can wreck your life even more. So, how should you handle it when the accusation against you becomes news?
First and foremost
The most important thing you need to do when you become a topic of public fodder is to be quiet. Do not say anything to anyone. If someone asks you to comment, do not even state your innocence. Maintain your right to remain silent. Remember, anything you say can be used as evidence against you, and you may not fully realize that certain statements could come back to haunt you in court.
You should find someone to be your spokesperson or representative. Make sure that person is in the legal field and understands the charges against you. You do not want to do this alone. Having someone on your side to look out for your interests will make the whole situation easier to handle.
You do not owe anyone an explanation about the accusations. You will have your day in court to prove your innocence, so do not try to do it in the court of public opinion. You may need to accept that people will believe you are guilty even if you are not. It is a tough situation and not fair, but that is the way society handles these things, and there is nothing you can do to change it. So, focus your efforts on handling the situation in court.