With the Trayvon Martin case, including the recent second degree murder charges against George Zimmerman making national news, violent crime is at the forefront of the nation’s consciousness. The Martin/Zimmerman case has raised questions about who the true victim really was. Although we may not know the answer to that question until the case has been resolved, unfortunately there are thousands of crimes committed every day, leaving victims to deal with the aftermath. Often there is so much focus on the perpetrators of crime that the victim gets somewhat left behind by court systems. However, more and more courts are addressing the needs of crime victims these days. You may be wondering what types of services are available to victims of crime in the United States, and where to find that information online.
Some states maintain statewide programs for victim services. For instances, Connecticut’s Office of Victim Services strives to provide “comprehensive, coordinated, and victim-centered services.” The website contains information about the state’s crime victim compensation program, which attempts to assist victims in recovering from the financial impact of crimes. This program even provides compensation to the families of victim’s who have died as a result of crime. The website also lists other available services and information, including victim services advocates, victim notification and community education and training programs. Connecticut’s Office of Victim Services website is one of the better online information resources for crime victims.
The Oregon Department of Justice also maintains a website for their Crime Victims Services Division. Similar to the Connecticut site, this one provides information on victim’s services including victim notification programs, compensation for crime victims and an explanation of crime victims’ rights. Additionally, the Oregon website provides information for professionals, including a “victim assistance toolkit;” as well as an entire section devoted to providing information to medical providers about victims’ rights and needs.
Information about services for crime victims can also be found online for the states of North Carolina, Texas and West Virginia, as well as more locally for Crawford County, AR, Denver, CO, Toombs County, GA, La Porte County, IN, Ellis County, KS, Haskell County, KS, Tuscola County, MI, Boone County, MO, Nordaway County, MO, Lincoln County, MT, Missoula County, MT, New York County, NY, Paulding County, OH, the City of Issaquah, WA and Morgan County, WV.
As always, keep checking Court Reference for more resources in your area.