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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 97822 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Winnipeg Victim/Witness Assistance Program - Planning Phase and Technical Report
Author(s): S L Brickey
Corporate Author: Canada Solicitor General
Communications Division
Programs Branch
Canada
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 51
Sponsoring Agency: Canada Solicitor General
Ottawa, Ontario K1A OP8, Canada
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

Canada Solicitor General
Communications Division
Programs Branch
Ottawa, Ontario K1A OP8,
Canada

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: The needs of victims and witnesses of crime in Winnipeg, Canada, were examined using data collected in personal interviews with police officers, Crown attorneys, officials of social service agencies that assist victims, and telephone interviews with a sample of 200 victims and 100 witnesses involved in crimes that took place between January and June, 1981.
Abstract: A wide variety of offenses were represented in the study, including rape, purse snatching, assault, break and enter, and stolen auto. Data analysis indicated that all surveyed agencies felt a victim/witness program was necessary. Social service officials frequently suggested that a program should provide information and assistance to demystify the court system and the role of the witness. Police felt this would help reduce a victim's anxiety and frustration. Prosecutors thought a program would be useful if its staff were intermediaries who contacted the Crown's office on behalf of the witness. The needs of personal and property crime victims differed. About 37 percent of the property crime victims stated that their homes needed emergency repairs immediately after the victimization, but almost half the personal crime victims expressed an immediate need for someone to talk to after the police left. Both categories wanted information on the status of the police investigation, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, and prompt return of stolen property. Witnesses' responses revealed that many lacked knowledge of the legal process. The majority had no contact with the Crown Attorney's office prior to their court appearance. Approximately 40 percent of witnesses said they were not called to give testimony, often because the accused changed the plea to not guilty at the last minute. Almost one-quarter said they lost some wages as a result of going to court. Nevertheless, 85 percent were willing to get involved in the court process again. The report discusses areas where police responses to victims could be improved, priorities to address in starting a victim-witness program, and areas for future research.
Index Term(s): Canada; Needs assessment; Victim services; Witness assistance
Note: Programs Branch Technical Report.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=97822

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