Criminal Investigation

Medico-legal aspects of sexual offences

Victim of alleged Sexual offence

(a) Victims of alleged Sexual offences like rape may be brought to the MI Room or may come on their own. In the event the victim comes directly, the civil police will be informed and necessary action will be taken to register a case. The examination may be carried out at a centre authorized for medicolegal work with forensic experts. Where the examination is carried out by a service MO, it should preferably be done by a lady MO or Gynaecologist or by MO i/c MI room in the presence of a female attendant. In cases of sodomy, the victim may be examined by the MO i/c MI Room.

(b) Guidelines for attending alleged victim of sexual offence

(i) The date and time of examination will be mentioned in the case sheet.

(ii) Case sheet will be initiated, noting personal particulars of the victim, along with date and the time of reporting.

(iii) MLC will be initiated after filling the MLC Register available at MI Room.

(iv) The alleged victim will be admitted if the medical condition is serious.

(vi) The civil police will be informed telephonically followed by in writing after filling up the MLC Register.

(vii) The Senior Registrar / CO of the hospital, CO of the unit, CMP and Station HQ will be informed.

(viii) At least two identification marks of the victim will be mentioned in the case sheet as well as in MLC register.

(ix) Report to the police will be given by name of the victim or as an unknown case (If name of the victim is not known). Care must be taken to preserve the confidentiality of the victim from others not related with the case.

(x) Police will register a case under the relevant section of the IPC.

(xi) The police may take the victim and the accused for medical examination at a hospital which is authorized to carry out medicolegal work.

(xii) The proformae for recording medical examination of alleged rape victim and the accused are enclosed as Enclosure ‘5’ & ‘6’ respectively.

(xiii) Consent of the victim must be obtained before starting the examination. The steps of examination and their purpose should be explained to the victim in a language she understands. The examination is to be carried out in the presence of a female attendant.

(xiv) All injuries present on the body will be recorded. Line diagrams depicting the front and back of the body may be used for a better description of location of the injuries.

(xv) If the clothes are the same as those worn during the occurrence of alleged sexual offence, they should be carefully examined for the presence of blood, seminal stains, mud etc.

(xvi) If there are any marks of suspicious stains, the clothes should be preserved with a view to forwarding them to the Chemical Examiner of dependent Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL). The format to be used for is enclosed as Enclosure ‘7’.

(xvii) If there are foreign hairs, fibers, debris under the nails etc, they must be carefully preserved and sent to experts of FSL for comparison with those found on the accused. Specimens should include vaginal swab, preferably from the posterior fornix.

(xviii) In case the victim reports herself directly to the hospital after the alleged crime, she should not be sent to the police station for legal formalities; instead the police will be called to the hospital for the necessary requirements.

(c) Special precautions in case of sexual offence.

(i) The date and time of arrival of the victim must be mentioned, both in the case sheet and the MLC Register. The duplicate copy of case sheet and Medicolegal Report shall be preserved for future reference.

(ii) Care must be taken to preserve various samples of medicolegal importance for their submission to respective police authority.

(iii) Where the accused in a case of sexual offence in police custody is brought for medical examination, consent is not required. Samples may be collected and handed over to the police for forensic examination.

(iv) All injuries shall be recorded in cases of alleged victims of sodomy.

(v) Care must be taken to preserve the vaginal / anal swab for forensic examination.

(vi) Neither the victim nor accused in cases of sexual offences should be permitted to wash or take a bath till the medical examination is completed.

REF : Guidelines by Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government Of India

Categories: Criminal Investigation

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