Victim of Domestic Violence or Serious Sexual Assault?

Your memory is a crime scene and merits all the protection afforded to a physical crime scene.

The Issues

Domestic abuse and serious sexual assault offences frequently present unique challenges insofar as some ‘survivors’ are not immediately confident enough to formally report events, are intimidated not to do so, have little confidence in the authorities, or, as in this case, are unable to do so due to the nature of injuries inflicted.

The passage of time has a real impact on criminal investigations: memory fades, is contaminated by external influence, becomes distorted, less accessible, and accuracy decreases (Penrod et al 1982. Wixted & Ebbeson, 1991 & 1997. Goldsmith et al 2005). Moreover, the criminal justice system offers little in the way of support for sterile, forensic recall of events. Indeed, this sets victims up for failure when under cross-examination by a skilled advocate of Active Defence (Hope & Hynes 2011).

If and when the witness decides to report, a tortuous process often follows during which they travel a Criminal Justice ‘conveyor belt’ that does little to support their forensic recall of events, indeed sets them up for failure when under cross examination by a skilled advocate of active defence (Hope & Hynes 2011).

A team of forensic psychology academics and practitioners from Intersol researched, developed, piloted, and rolled-out a procedure called the ‘Self-Administered Interview (SAI). The SAI is a powerful investigative tool that is used to elicit comprehensive initial statements, quickly and efficiently. It takes the form a booklet that includes a standardised protocol of clear instructions and questions that enable witnesses to provide their own written statement (this may include sketches and any other evidence). The SAI has been proven to enhance and inoculate memory from external influence, and ‘cold-storing’ the detail until it’s needed. The SAI is ideal for use when a traditional interview is not immediately possible.

The case of Lady A demonstrates the use of the SAI, see attached case study – IT IS REAL – and if you’d like to know more please contact the team at Intersol Global ( Similarly if you’ve any contacts in Government, Health, of the 3rd Sector who might benefit from this scientifically proved product please refer them to us.

Case Study: SAI Case Study