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English Premier League (EPL) giants Manchester City, have decided to suspend defender Benjamin Mendy, after the footballer was charged with rape as confirmed by police. The France international is set to appear in court on Friday. He has been charged with four counts of rape and one count of sexual assault against three people.

“The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has authorized Cheshire Constabulary to charge a man in connection with allegations of sexual assault. Benjamin Mendy, aged 27, has been charged with four counts of rape and one count of sexual assault. The charges relate to three complainants over the age of 16 and are alleged to have taken place between October 2020 and August 2021. Mendy has been remanded in police custody and is set to appear at Chester Magistrates’ Court on Friday, Aug. 27,” said a statement issued by Cheshire Police.

Manchester City further confirmed their decision to suspend the footballer with an update on the official website.

“Manchester City can confirm that following his being charged by police today, Benjamin Mendy has been suspended pending an investigation. The matter is subject to a legal process and the club is therefore unable to make further comment until that process is complete.”

Mendy’s suspension is certainly a massive blow for the footballer, who has battled poor form on the field as well in recent times. The defender drew criticism from former Manchester United defender Gary Neville, who admonished the French footballer’s performance in the Premier League opener against Tottenham Hotspur.

He is not the first athlete to be charged with Sexual Harassment in sport, it is becoming more common each and every day, which is an extremely sad development for human nature but with movements such as the ‘me too movement’ which are demanding that the accusers be held accountable for their actions regardless of status. The “Me Too” movement, which focuses on the experiences of sexual violence survivors, has earned a large response in part because sexual harassment and sexual assault impact people every day by sharing their own experiences, the movement’s proponents make clear just how common sexual harassment is. The hope is that, if people are more aware of sexual harassment and how casually it is sometimes treated, then tolerance for it will decrease and support for victims will rise.

Steps to take if you’ve been sexually assaulted

If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual violence, there are resources available to help make sure you are safe, as well as to ensure that your attacker is brought to justice.

Ensure safety

If you have been attacked, your priority should be to find safety. It’s important to get away from your attacker and, if possible, find someone supportive who will be with you until you’re comfortable taking the next steps.

Go to the hospital

Once you’re safe, it’s critical to go to the hospital immediately following a sexual assault.

If you sustained any injuries from your attacker, they will need to be treated.

Even if you are not physically injured, a hospital can still collect evidence related to your assault. It may be difficult, but you should avoid washing your clothes or body until after you have been to the hospital. Doing so could result in the destruction of evidence which could later be used to prove your attacker’s guilt in court.

Going into a strange environment so quickly following a sexual assault may be difficult, but you can take comfort in the fact that many registered nurses are trained to provide care to survivors of sexual assault. They will treat you and support you.

File a police report

Even if you’re uncomfortable doing so, you should file a report with the police. Filing a report does not necessarily mean that you have to press charges. However, filing a report shortly after the crime will help for the collection of evidence in case you do decide to press charges against your attacker later.

While you are filing a police report, a criminal justice professional may be able to advise you on how to proceed, whether you are interested in pressing charges or not.

Get help

Mental trauma can stay with sexual assault survivors for many weeks, months, or even years following an attack. It’s imperative to seek out mental health resources to help you come to terms with what has happened and learn about how you should proceed.

For students, this may include mental health resources provided by their school Working professionals may want to speak with their HR department to learn about the available resources. Anyone can speak to a counselor to help them through the recovery process.

Reach out

The Me Too movement has shown that sexual assault survivors are not alone.

Reaching out to people you can trust — whether they’re family members, friends, loved ones, or mental health professionals — can help you to build a support network. Having this kind of supportive environment can help you to recover from the sexual assault. However, many victims are hesitant to speak openly of the assault, which is understandable.

Sexual harassment and sexual assault are almost always about control, and the best way to take control back over one’s mind, body, and spirit is to ensure that the attacker does not go unpunished or is able to do the same thing to someone else.

These are your experiences, and it’s your choice what to do with them. No matter what, always remember that you don’t have to suffer through this alone.

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