Forensic Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) are experienced Registered Nurses with special education to conduct objective medical-legal forensic examinations on reported victims and suspects of sexual assault events. Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners may be called as experts, in court proceedings, by prosecution or defense.
Forensic Nurse Professionals is an independent sexual assault resource center, located in Simi Valley, California.
If You Have Been Sexually Assaulted
Immediately, or as soon as you feel comfortable, notify the law enforcement agency in whose jurisdiction the event took place. Why? Because not every hospital is equipped to care for sexual assault patients. Law enforcement knows where the SANE programs are and will make sure that you get a forensic examination, if you want one, at no cost to you.
You may have heard that you should not take a shower, brush your teeth, change your clothes, or eat or drink anything. Of course, it is best to have a forensic medical examination as soon as possible, when the suspect is in question, but please, do not let that stop you from getting a forensic examination. If you have taken a shower, brushed your teeth, or changed your clothes, don't let that stop you from making this important report. You have 5 to 7 days to make that initial call for an acute exam. Anything after that will be evaluated as a non-acute exam, which can still be very valuable for reasons assessed on a case by case basis. The nurse examiner may want to collect your clothes. If you have changed your clothes, and still have the clothes you were wearing, law enforcement may want to collect them, or bring them with you to the exam. Bring some extra clothes with you to wear home from the exam in case your clothing is collected. It is not uncommon for someone to wait a period of time before deciding to report a sexual assault.
Although the world is full of suffering; It is also full of overcoming it.
Cari Caruso RN SANE-A is a Board Certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner who has extensive experience conducting forensic examinations on reported victims and suspects of sexual assault events. Her testimony, as an expert witness, has been heard, at the behest of both prosecution and defense.
Cari has been a Registered Nurse since 1974 and had practiced in several acute areas such as Emergency Department, Pediatrics, Pediatrics Emergency Department, Women’s Health, GI Lab, Post-Partum, charge nurse of a surgical floor, and clinical positions, including a being a Camp Nurse, prior to entering the forensic nursing arena. She has taught others and been a mentor in the field of forensic nursing. She is a Charter Member of the International Association of Forensic Nurses.
Member of the Los Angeles County Panel of Experts
CV and Fee Schedule available upon request
It is a capital mistake to theorize before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment.
-Arthur Conan Doyle
Cari Is an instructor of forensic nursing education courses including the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Course for Adult/Adolescent examiners and the Sexual Assault Examination for Pediatric examiners, Human Abuse Injuries, and an Elder Abuse course.
She has been published.
Cari is a Charter Member of the International Association of Forensic Nurses.
Courses are available through the University of California, Riverside, Extension:
Forensic Nurse Professionals
Cari Caruso RN SANE-A
is a Continuing Education Provider
Sexual assault can happen to anyone...
men and women. Take care and be safe.