Kauai News

Kaua’i police celebrate its five forensic nurses

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Kaua‘i police held a special ceremony Thursday to celebrate the department’s five forensic nurses during Forensic Nurses Week, which runs Nov 6-12, 2022.

The honorees were: Erin Carrington, Stephanie Huhn, Chelise Kaaihue, Charlene Ono and Ceisha Judd.

The Kaua’i Police Department held a ceremony during Forensic Nurses week to honor its five forensic nurses. Photo Courtesy: Kaua’i Police Department

“These ladies are an invaluable part of KPD and do so much for our community behind the scenes and we want to take this opportunity to honor the incredible work that they do and their dedication to their jobs,” Kaua’i Police Chief Todd Raybuck said.

He was joined at the ceremony by several people, including Mayor Derek S. K. Kawakami and councilmembers Felicia Cowden and Billy DeCosta.

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Forensic Nurses Week is designated to recognize the dedicated nurses who provide exceptional care to patients impacted by violence, abuse and trauma. Forensic nurses work to increase victim-centered care and mitigate violence through public health strategies with both offender and victim.

Forensic nurses are highly educated professionals that continue to meet the increasingly complex forensic and healthcare needs of individuals, families, communities, populations and systems worldwide. Forensic nurses also provide consultation and testimony for civil and criminal proceedings.

The forensic nurses at the Kaua’i Police Department are also part of a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) program, which provides a number of ways for a victim of sexual assault to feel safer by allowing them to be treated in a private exam room at the Līhuʽe headquarters.

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This gives the patient the ability to be directly in touch with the detectives and nurses who work as a specially trained team for these incidents. It also provides victims with the kind of privacy and confidentiality that they might not otherwise receive in a hospital setting.    

I want to thank our nurses past and present for their service.  They take such great care in providing survivors of sexual assault the compassionate trauma-informed care that they need,” said Investigative Services Bureau Captain Paul Applegate.

When a victim contacts the Kaua’i Police Department to report a crime, either by calling 911 or dispatch at 808-241-1711, Kauaʽi’s SART program (K-SART) is immediately activated, allowing law enforcement, nurses, YWCA victim’s advocates and Kaua’i prosecutors to work closely together in order to provide the best possible care for the patient.

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Victims are encouraged to call 911 to report a sexual assault crime so that the SART system and SANE program are activated right away.

Visit https://ag.hawaii.gov/cpja/home/hawaii-sexual-assault-response-and-training-hsart-program/ and https://sakitta.org/hawaii/ for more information.”

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