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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 192842 Find in a Library
Title: Victims' Rights Legislation: An Overview (From Policing and Victims, P 109-121, 2002, Laura J. Moriarty, ed., -- See NCJ-192835)
Author(s): Robert A. Jerin
Date Published: 2002
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: Prentice Hall Publishing
Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
Sale Source: Prentice Hall Publishing
Criminal Justice and Police Training
1 Lake Street
Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
United States of America
Type: Historical Overview
Format: Book (Softbound)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter focused on the history of the victims’ rights movement.
Abstract: The legislation that gave crime victims access to programs to help them recover from their victimization began slowly with grassroots action, then moved to the States, and finally to the Federal Government where programs and financial support were provided. Many victims’ programs have emerged as a direct result of the grassroots efforts of the feminist movement beginning in the late 1960's. During the mid-1970's the first victim-witness advocates’ offices were started in district attorney’s offices. These programs are found on the local, State, and Federal level. Another type of legislation that seeks to help the crime victim is the provision of restitution by offenders. Attempts to guarantee victims’ rights in the criminal justice process have been enacted on the Federal and State level. The rights of victims established in several forms of legislation include: the right to be treated with fairness and respect; the right to be protected from the accused offender; the right to be notified of all court proceedings; the right to be present at all public court proceedings related to the offense; and the right to information about the conviction, sentencing, imprisonment, and release of the offender. New programs are being developed and new laws supporting crime victims are being passed. On the Federal level, bills currently awaiting legislative action focus on children’s rights and rights for victims of hate crimes, stalking, and gender violence. The expansion of rights for crime victims will continue until such time as the public believes that they are being treated fairly by the criminal justice system. 18 references
Main Term(s): Laws and Statutes; Victims rights
Index Term(s): Police services for victims; Restitution programs; Victim compensation; Victim impact statements; Victim services; Victim-witness programs
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