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Victim Rights

Victim Rights

You have the right to be given information about the crime, how the criminal justice system works, the rights of victims, and the availability of services to victims.

You have the right to be informed of and be present at court proceedings of the accused.

You have the right to talk with the prosecutor and provide a Victim Impact Statement (VIS).

You have the right to be heard at the sentencing of the accused and at other times as allowed by law.

You have the right to receive restitution.

You have the right to receive information about the conviction or final disposition and sentence of the accused.

You have the right to present your views and concerns to the Governor or agency considering the release of the accused.

A Victim’s Responsibilities

If you wish to receive notification and to be informed of court proceedings you must notify your Victim Witness Assistant at the District Attorney’s office of any change of address or telephone number you may have.

What to do if Threatened or Intimidated

Threatening a witness is a crime in North Carolina. If you receive a threat from the defendant or anyone else, call the police or contact the prosecutor or the Victim Witness Assistant in the District Attorney’s office.

The Victims Compensation Program

The Victims Compensation Program, administered by the Division of Victim and Justice Services, is designed to assist persons and crime survivors who suffer personal injury or death caused by criminal conduct which occurred on or after August 13, 1987. Under North Carolina law, the victim, his/her survivors, or a legal representative may file a claim within two (2) years to receive compensation from this fund. For more information visit the Victims Compensation Program website at: www.NCCrimeControl.org/vjs/

Who is eligible for Compensation?

The victim, a dependant of a deceased victim, a person who is authorized to act on behalf of a victim or dependant, a third person who provided benefit to the victim of his/her family other than in the course or scope of his employment, business or profession.

What may be compensated?

The compensation program is designed to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and/or replacement services (i.e. childcare expenses). A maximum of $30,000 may be paid for any award except when the victim dies as a result of the crime. In that case, an additional $5,000 may be paid to the survivors for funeral expenses. Benefits for approved claims are paid directly to a service provider.

The District Attorney’s Responsibilities to Victims

The District Attorney’s office will notify you, if you wish, of information concerning court proceedings.

The District Attorney’s office will provide you the opportunity to talk with the attorney prosecuting the case, before the case is disposed, about your views of the disposition of the case.

The District Attorney’s office will provide you a secure waiting area during court proceedings, if at all possible and practical.

The District Attorney’s office will, prior to disposing of the case, offer you the right to make a statement telling the sentencing judge the impact this case has had on you.

The District Attorney’s office will notify you in writing about what has happened in your case within thirty (30) days of the final proceeding.

If the defendant appeals the verdict, the District Attorney’s office will forward to the Attorney General’s office the appropriate information about you so they can inform you on how the appellate process works.

SAVAN- Statewide Automated Victim Assistance and Notification

SAVAN is a free, anonymous, computer-based telephone program that provides victims of crime with two important services: information and notification. The SAVAN program is designed to provide you with a quick easy access to offender information and to alert you when an offender’s custody status changes. Do not depend solely on SAVAN or any other program for your safety. SAVAN is a new program and may not be available in all North Carolina Counties. For more information visit SAVAN’s website at: www.ncsavan.org