Duties and Responsibilities:
Provide advocacy services to victims and witnesses of criminal events, on behalf of the Prosecutor’s Office, in order to facilitate the prosecution of the offender and help make the judicial process more responsive to the needs of our citizens who have been impacted by the effects of criminal behavior.
Staff in the Victim/Witness Unit provide the following services:
- Explanation of and orientation to the Criminal Justice process and Victims’ Rights;
- Information regarding the current status or disposition of a criminal case;
- Advocacy, emotional support and information regarding safety and protection issues to help manage the trauma of the criminal event;
- Accompany victims or witnesses to interviews, court hearings and trial when testifying ;
- Victim advocacy referral to community resources and agencies which can help with short and long term assistance;
- Assistance in applying for Crime Victim Compensation provided through the State;
- Assistance in securing the return of property held in evidence by the police;
- Assistance with determining and securing restitution;
- Assistance with completing and presenting a victim impact statement to the Court
Crime Victim Compensation:
Washington State established, by law, a victim compensation program that can provide eligible individuals with compensation for personal injuries suffered as a result of a crime. Eligible losses may include:
- Expenses for injuries not covered by personal insurance policies;
- Loss of wages;
- Compensation related to temporary or permanent disabilities.
NOTE: There is no provision in this law to provide compensation to victims for stolen or damaged property.
Victim Impact Statement:
- Washington law provides victims the right to submit a victim impact statement to the court. This statement may include information regarding the financial, medical, social and psychological impact that resulted from the offense committed. This statement will become a part of the criminal case file.