[Svrilist] [Fwd: AW: SVRI - Research on Genital Photography in Sexual Assault]

Sexual Violence Research Initiative svri at mrc.ac.za
Wed Sep 6 08:13:25 SAST 2006

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: 	AW: SVRI - Research on Genital Photography in Sexual Assault
Date: 	Tue, 05 Sep 2006 17:33:09 +0200
From: 	Klopfstein Ursula <Ursula.Klopfstein at irm.unibe.ch>
To: 	Nancy.Gage-Lindner at HSM.hessen.de, svri at mrc.ac.za

Dear Colleagues,

The working group against violence on children and women from the Swiss 
society on legal medicin is about to publishing a recommendation about 
the examination of victims after sexual assaults and we agree with 
Angela Williams, that NO genital Photos from victims should reach the 
court nor the police or the Coroner (Untersuchungsrichter).

We (the forensic examiner) have to explain genital lesions very clear in 
the written report, so the investigators (Police, coroner) can work 
without a picture.

We note in the report that photos have been made and can, if necessary 
be showed to the judge personally.

Practice: In Berne (Switzerland) we (Institut of forensic medicin) are 
examining about 80 adult victims and 50 Children (every age) each year 
after sexual assault. In almost every case we take pictures from the 
genital region, especially from the introitus and the hymen, even when 
there is no fresh lesion. The photos are taken with a digital camera. 
Unfortunately we still don’t have a colposcopy with a camera; this is 
one of my first wishes for Santa Clause!

For children it is never a problem when we take a photograph, because we 
can show them the photo after the examination. For adult victims it is 
sometimes shameful, the more it is important, that we can assure that 
the picture will stay in our database. These are my personal impressions 
and not results from a study.

If you need more information about our experiences pleas contact me again.

Sincerely Ursula Klopfstein

Ursula Klopfstein MD

Forensic Physician

Institut of Forensic Medicin at the University of Berne

Bühlstrasse 20

CH- 3012 Berne

+41(0)31 631 84 43 Büro direkt

+41(0)31 631 84 11 Zentrale


*Von:* Nancy.Gage-Lindner at HSM.hessen.de 
[mailto:Nancy.Gage-Lindner at HSM.hessen.de]
*Gesendet:* Dienstag, 5. September 2006 09:59
*An:* info at frauennotrufe-hessen.de; 
Andrea.Berzlanovich at med.uni-muenchen.de; Marie-claude.Hofner at chuv.ch; 
Hildegard.Grass at med.uni-duesseldorf.de; heineman at uke.uni-hamburg.de; 
dseifert at uke.uni-hamburg.de; b.herrmann at t-online.de; info at dggkv.de; 
doctorphil77 at yahoo.fr; Klopfstein Ursula; dagmar at freudenberg-web.de; 
Dagmar.Freudenberg at STA-GOE.Niedersachsen.de; 
Sabine.Heinke at AMTSGERICHT.BREMEN.de; 
s.kraeuter-stockton at sta.justiz.saarland.de; koehler at staab-dresden.de; 
Susanne at nothhafft.de
*Betreff:* SVRI - Research on Genital Photography in Sexual Assault


Evidence and privacy issues correspondance from the WHO Sexual Violence 
Research Initiative for your information!

greetings, Nancy

Nancy Gage-Lindner
Hessisches Sozialministerium - Hesse Department of Social Welfare
Referatsleitung Prävention und Schutz vor Gewalt
Section Head Violence Prevention and Intervention
Dostojewskistrasse 4
D - 65187 Wiesbaden
Tel. [++49] (0) 611 817 2473
Fax [++49] (0) 611 817 3260 (zentral)
Fax [++49] (0) 611 890 84183 (direkt)
*/ab 10.7.2006 neue E-Adresse/new e-address:/**/
/**/nancy.gage-lindner at hsm.hessen.de/**/ /*

*/Publikationen zur verbesserten ärztlichen Dokumentation bei 
Partnergewalt in Neuauflage 2005 /*

http://www.hsm.hessen.de <http://www.hsm.hessen.de/>
http://www.familienatlas.de/ca/a/dzv/ (in English)


    *Von:* Angela Williams [mailto:angelac at vifm.org]
    *Gesendet:* Dienstag, 5. September 2006 05:19
    *An:* Sexual violence research initiative.
    *Betreff:* Re: [Svrilist] Research on Genital Photography in Sexual

    Hi Suzanne,

    It is interesting that you ask at such a time – we are in the midst
    of debate on this topic.

    Practice: Videocolposcopy is almost routinely performed on cases of
    child sexual assault (past and recent).

    General consensus here is that there is rarely any indication for
    the use of videocolp of genital examinations in adults, and it is
    rarely performed.

    Photography of body injuries is common occurrence – child and adult.

    Policy: Causing some very interesting debate presently. I wont head
    into the finest details as yet except to say that one state wants to
    make policy against the use of videocolposcopy in adults. Overall,
    the examiners are understandably horrified that the decision doesn’t
    lie with them. There is a draft policy circulating that has caused
    much angst. I will let you know of the final version if you are
    interested. In the meantime, perhaps as a kneejerk response, the
    policy making teams throughout Australia (!) are on the way to
    creating their own. Indeed our organisation (FAMSACA = Forensic and
    Medical Sexual Assault Clinicians Australia) will be finalizing our
    own version shortly.

    2) We hold a very strong view that NO genital photography reaches
    court. Access to the Judge and both legal representatives is
    possible but is also challenged. The ideal scenario is that the two
    medical experts view the material behind closed doors and agree to
    agree or disagree on the findings. Withholding this material from
    the court has not been a problem in the system within which I work
    (yet! – as we are very mindful that this may occur in legal process).

    3)Recently the age range for children was redefined as 17 or younger
    in the law…

    However, genital photography on children is rarely performed in the
    older adolescent group – I don’t really have figures for you on this
    one. Personally, I probably perform them on 14year olds and less –
    mostly as an exercise in teaching/reassuring than for legal reasons.
    Mostly, they agree to using the videocolp to examine but not to
    recording (therefore they (and I) can see but not taped).

    4) Yes to how they feel about them being done, but not sure if in
    the context of proceeding to court.??

    Your work is really interesting and if you have a moment keep in
    touch regarding the progress. I am also writing on behalf of the
    FAMSACA organisation of which I am the president. The website is:
    www.Famsacaustralia.org.au <http://www.famsacaustralia.org.au/> if
    you ever want to browse.

    **Dr Angela Williams**

    **Forensic Physician**

    **Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine**

    **11 Moore St****, Southbank VIC 3006**

    **Ph: (03) 9684 4480**

    **Fx: (03) 9684 4481**

    -----Original Message-----
    *From:* Sexual Violence Research Initiative [mailto:svri at mrc.ac.za]
    *Sent:* Thursday, 31 August 2006 3:59 PM
    *To:* Sexual Violence Research Initiative
    *Subject:* [Svrilist] Research on Genital Photography in Sexual Assault

    Dear Colleagues,

    The Ontario Network of Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Treatment
    Centres in Canada, is conducting a review of current practice and
    evidence of photographs of genital injuries and their use as
    evidence in sexual assault cases. The findings from the review will
    inform the development of a Province-wide policy on the use of such
    photo's, which currently are not standard practice.

    Specific questions being examined include:

    (1) What policies and practices are currently in use in other
    countries and practice settings.
    (2) Are genital photo's being used in court cases, and if so, how
    and to what end?
    (3) Are genital photo's being taken for both adults and children,
    and if their use is limited to children what is the age range?
    (4) Are there any studies that have looked at how victims feel about
    genital photographs being taken and subsequently used in legal

    Our preliminary scan of the academic literature has produced very
    little. As such, we want to invite members of the SVRI listserv to
    share any relevant policies, guidelines or research their respective
    agencies have. Comments, questions, references and resources can be
    forward to Suzanne Sicchia at: Suzanne.Sicchia at utoronto.ca
    <mailto:Suzanne.Sicchia at utoronto.ca>

    Many Thanks,
    Suzanne Sicchia, Research Consultant
    University of Toronto, Canada

    on behalf of the
    Ontario Network of Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Treatment

    * INPALMS - COLOMBO - 2007*
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    and Science
    is being held in Colombo, Sri Lanka, from 22-27 July 2007.
    Go to www.inpalms.com <http://www.inpalms.com> for registration details.
    If you would like further information, contact Patricia O'Brien
    patricio at vifm.org <mailto:patricio at vifm.org>

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