VICTIM / WITNESS SERVICES OFFICE
Coordinator: Jessica Kohout
16 William St.
Lyons, New York 14489
The District Attorney’s Office considers assisting victims and witnesses a top priority. For more than two decades, with the support of a grant from the New York State Office of Victim Services, the Wayne County District Attorney’s Office has provided services to victims and witnesses of crime through the Victim/Witness Services Office. It is the goal of this office to help people recover from the effects of being a victim or a witness to a crime.
Crime victims suffer a multitude of losses, including but not limited to physical injury, emotional trauma and financial burdens. A primary function of the Victim/Witness Services Office is to assist victims in recovering from those losses.
The office of victim/witness services can provide;
- immediate general and emotional support services to victims and family members of crime victims
- assistance to victims in filing an application with the NYS Office of Victim Services
- help in initiating the return of confiscated property
- appropriate advocacy, information and referrals
- assistance with victim impact statements (including restitution requests) and parole hearing statements
- advocacy with victims’ employers and creditors if requested
When someone becomes a victim of or a witness to a felony crime they become an important part of the prosecution team. The Victim/Witness Services Office will help victims/witnesses to understand the prosecution by;
- notifying victims of Grand Jury proceedings
- providing indictment information
- offering court accompaniment
- explaining the court proceedings from arrest through post-conviction
- providing information and reminders regarding court dates and other appointments
- providing updates on status of cases to victims
- notifying victims of certain felonies of their right to speak at sentencing
- offering assistance in preparing sentencing statements
- notifying victims of post-sentencing follow-up with the Department of Correctional Services and Parole
- Providing information on the VINE system (Victim Information and Notification Everyday)
Most importantly we provide a caring and knowledgeable presence during a most traumatic time for victims.