Evidence Preservation

UTRGV recognizes that reporting misconduct is a difficult decision to make, especially if the report involves someone who is not a stranger. We encourage you to keep all evidence that might support a future investigation should you choose to make a report at a later date.

Evidence that you should consider preserving includes:

  • Clothing, bedding or any object that may contain bodily fluids (should be stored in cardboard boxes or paper bags). Consider labeling the outside of the box or bag. For example, “t-shirt, last worn 01-20-2020.”
  • Electronic communications (e.g., text messages, emails, social media posts). Consider making printouts of the electronic messages, note the source and date of the communications (if not already time and date stamped).
  • Photographs (including, photos stored on smartphones, personal computers, and other devices). Consider making printouts as electronic devices might break or simply not work with the passage of time.
  • A forensic sexual assault examination report.
  • Consider keeping a list of names and contact details of potential witnesses.
  • Journal notes or calendars with relevant information.
  • Any evidence that might be lost through an upgrade or replacement of equipment or technology, consider asking an advocacy office for help (such as OVAVP). Some software and certain accounts may simply be lost, or access discontinued, with the passage of time.

Any physical, documentary or electronic data that might be helpful or relevant to an investigation should be preserved.

If preserving evidence, consider talking with an advocate (such as OVAVP) with respect to safe places to store evidence.