Sexual Assaults

Sexual Assaults - Header Image - Flirting isn't a crime - rape is!

West Yorkshire Police ran a  "party season" campaign highlighting the nature of rape and other sexual offences reported to the Force in a bid to reduce the number of crimes being committed. The campaign was run up to the Christmas and New Year party season, and will be repeated again this year. Example of poster

Work has been undertaken to understand the sexual offences involving people aged 16 and over reported over a 12 month period to West Yorkshire Police. It was found that in approximately half the reported serious sexual offences, the perpetrator and victim were described as ‘acquaintances’, in some cases having met in a bar or club in the hours before the offence has taken place. Alcohol was also consistently shown to be a strong influence, with the majority of serious sexual offences happening on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday between 12 midnight and 7am.

Police developed a series of posters displayed in shops, bars and clubs across West Yorkshire highlighting that activities such as walking someone home or sharing a kiss aren’t a crime, but rape is.

West Yorkshire Police treat all reports of rape and sexual assault very seriously.

If you have just been a victim of rape or sexual assault please call 999. The sooner that an assault is reported, the more evidence we will be able to collect to help prevent you or someone else being hurt again.

West Yorkshire Police treat historic incidents of rape or sexual assault just as seriously as recent ones. If you would like to report a crime that has happened in the past please call 101 and a specially trained officer will attend.

We are dedicated to helping anyone, male or female, whatever your circumstances, who may have been a victim of this type of crime.

West Yorkshire Police has specially trained officers, who are dedicated to helping and supporting victims of all sexual assaults. These officers will investigate offences in a discreet and professional manner, offering support and guidance from the time of reporting through to the conclusion of an investigation.

We understand that reporting a rape or sexual assault can be an extremely difficult thing to do, but our first priority is your safety and security. We will do everything we can to make sure you and your family receive the best possible care and support.

If you have been raped, please remember it is not your fault.  Regardless of what you might have been wearing, how much you’d had to drink or who was involved, we will never treat any type of rape as more or less serious than any other.

All victims of sexual assault are given anonymity by law. No information which could identify you can ever be published, so there is no need to worry about anyone knowing what has happened.


Sexual Consent - an analogy using tea...

Credit : Blue Seat Studios


Crime Prevention Officer Chris Joyce talks about the campaign to “Made In Leeds” television.

How we deal with reports of rape or sexual assault

  • Following a 999 call reporting a rape or sexual assault specially trained officers from your local division will attend immediately.

  • These specialist officers will complete a victim pack with the victim.

  • They will gather evidence relating to the suspect and the scene and a medical examination of the victim will take place. Our officers will do everything they can to put you at ease and feel as comfortable as possible.

  • After this, the case will be referred to the relevant specialist department; this could be the divisional CID, or the local Safeguarding Unit.

  • The type of crime, age of the victim and their location will determine which team the case will be referred.

  • All cases of rape or sexual assault will be different but in all cases the officers will be open and honest and do their best to minimise trauma and offer support for as long as you would like.


If you would like support or advice but would rather not speak to a police officer there are other agencies that can help :

West Yorkshire SARC (Sexual Assault Referral Centre) is a jointly funded initiative between West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner and NHS England aimed at improving the provision of services to victims of rape and serious sexual assault.

Rape and Sexual Assault can be a frightening experience and many people can find it difficult to cope.

The West Yorkshire SARC offers a free, sensitive, confidential and non-judgemental service to both males and females, the staff are happy to support you and help you make decisions about who else you might want to inform. The service is available whether or not you decide to report the incident to the police. We aim to provide a safe and supportive environment to enable you to talk openly and freely. Contact with the SARC is completely voluntary.

Services that are available within the SARC are:

  • Access to a Forensic Medical Examiner, when compliant with the FFLM guidelines

  • Referral care pathways for ongoing healthcare needs

  • Referral care pathways to the ISVA (Independent Sexual Advisors) service, who provide emotional and practical support including advice and guidance throughout the Criminal Justice journey

  • No police report is required to access the above services.

To access these services or to obtain further information please contact the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) on 01924 298954.


Additional Useful Links

Bradford Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Survivors Service - 01274 308270

Kirklees Rape and Sexual Abuse Counselling Centre - 01484 450040

Women’s Centre Calderdale and Kirklees

Support after Rape and Sexual Violence Leeds (SARSVL) - 0808 802 3344
Confidential Freephone helpline - Text support : - 0779 780 3211
Email Support:- [email protected]
Advocacy tel: 0113 200 2930 
Email: [email protected]

Downloads / Resources (JPEG & PDF Artwork / Posters)

Flirting isn't a crime... rape is!



Having the last dance isn't a crime... rape is!



Buying someone a drink isn't a crime... rape is!



Sharing a taxi isn't a crime... rape is!



Walking someone home isn't a crime... rape is!



Sharing a kiss at Christmas isn't a crime... rape is!



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