In most circumstances you may not need to do anything except record the events that have given cause for concern. The best way to preserve evidence is to report the matter as quickly as possible.
However, there may be occasions when it is important to follow certain rules
- Make a written record of messages (e.g. answer-phone) to ensure they are not lost. Include the date and time and sign them
- Ensure written records (notes, letters, bank statements, medication records etc.) are kept in a safe place
- Don’t tidy up, wash clothes, bedding or other items.
- Do not try to clear or tidy anything up
- Try not to touch anything unless you have to for the immediate wellbeing of the victim – if you have to try to make a record of what you have done
- If any sexual offence is suspected try to discourage the victim from washing, drinking, cleaning their teeth or going to the toilet until the police are present
- Preserve anything used to warm or comfort the victim e.g. a blanket
- Try to ensure that no one else enters the premises or alleged scene of crime until the police arrive
- If you can, try and ensure that the alleged perpetrator does not have any contact with the victim
- Record any physical signs or injuries using a body map (click here) or hand drawing. Write a description of any physical signs or injuries including size, shape, colour etc.
- Always remember to sign and date your notes and any other records you have made