Victim Witness Assistance Program
VICTIM WITNESS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
It is the intent of the Black Hawk County Victim Witness Assistance Program to offer you support and guidance throughout the Criminal Justice System. The program strives to help you understand your role in the court process and to help the system take your needs into consideration whenever possible.
The Victim Witness Assistance Program:
- assists you in obtaining restitution or compensation for any damages inflicted upon you or your property.
- assists you if you are eligible in applying for the Crime Victim Compensation Program.
- informs you of your rights as a victim of crime.
- assists in referrals for medical, counseling, and other available human services.
- explains to you what your role is in any proceedings and helps you prepare for what the system expects of you.
- helps you prepare for trial and accompanies you to court, if that is what you would like.
- involves you when possible in decisions which affect the case.
- helps you to get back property that is being held as evidence.
According to Iowa law, as a victim of crime you have the right:
- to know the scheduled date, time, and place of trial.
- to register with the Black Hawk County Sheriff to be notified when the defendant is released from jail.
- to receive restitution from the defendant for economic losses resulting from the crime.
- to make and file a written victim impact statement in the presence of the defendant.
- to have a victim counselor present at proceedings related to the crime.
- to apply to the Crime Victim Compensation Program, which pays for medical expenses and lost income in cases of violent crime.
- to be informed of any plea agreements related to the crime.
- if you are a victim of a violent crime which the defendant is sent to prison, to register with the Department of Justice, Board or Parole, and Department of Corrections so you can be notified of the appeal process and outcome, parole hearings, and the inmates release.
YOUR FEELINGS AS A VICTIM OF CRIME
Some common feelings you may be experiencing after you have been victimized are:
- a sense of violation
- anger and frustration
- increased fear
- a feeling of loss of control over your life
- a loss of trust in other people
ANY feelings you may be having are valid and should be respected. It can help to talk about these feelings. For information on counseling and other local victim services, phone the Victim Witness Assistance Program, 833-3001.