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Victim Witness Assistance

The United States Attorney's Office is committed to ensuring that crime victims and witnesses are treated fairly, with dignity and respect, throughout their involvement in the federal criminal justice system. The goal of the Victim-Witness Assistance Unit is to respond to the needs of victims and witnesses of federal crimes in accordance with provisions of federal law and Department of Justice regulations.

Federal laws affording crime victims rights include:

  • The Victim Witness Protection Act of 1982
  • The Crime Control Act of 1990
  • Victims' Rights and Restitution Act of 1990
  • The Victims of Child Abuse Act of 1990
  • Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994
  • The Mandatory Victims Restitution Act of 1996
  • The Victim Rights Clarification Act of 1997
  • The Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000

The following link is to a brochure that will provide valuable information for someone who is a crime victim: What You Can Do if You Are a Victim of CrimeLink to PDF

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Victim Notification System (VNS)

VNS, a cooperative effort between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Federal Bureau of Prisons, provides federal crime victims with an opportunity to access case information during the investigation, prosecution and incarceration phases.

If you are a federal crime victim, you will receive a Victim Identification Number (VIN) and Personal Identification Number (PIN).

The Department of Justice Victim Notification SystemLink to PDF

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Federal Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Laws

In certain instances, domestic violence crimes fall under federal statutes. In collaboration with state and local authorities, the U.S. Attorney's Office is committed to prosecuting cases which meet federal guidelines. However, state and local authorities will continue to prosecute most domestic violence cases. All federal domestic violence crimes are felonies.

Federal domestic violence information: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/vawo
Missouri domestic violence information: http://www.mocadv.org

Federal Domestic Violence LawsLink to PDF

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Crime Victim Compensation

Victims of violent federal crimes may be eligible to receive assistance through the Missouri Crime Victim Compensation Program (CVC). The CVC provides a fund of secondary or last resource which may provide help with out-of-pocket losses, including lost wages, funeral expenses and medical/counseling expenses. Property losses are not covered by CVC.

For additional information go to: http://www.dps.mo.gov/CVC/index.htmExternal Website

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Resources for Crime Victims

U.S. Department of Justice - Office for Victims of Crime
National Center for Missing and Exploited ChildrenExternal Website
National Organization for Victims Assistance (NOVA)External Website
The National Victim CenterExternal Website
Missouri Victim Assistance Network (MoVA)External Website
Missouri Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MOCASA)External Website

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Federal Crime Victim's Bill of Rights

Title 42 U.S.C. ยง 10606(b) states that federal crime victims are accorded the following rights:

  1. The right to be treated with fairness and with respect for the victim's dignity and privacy.
  2. The right to be reasonably protected from the accused offender.
  3. The right to be notified of court proceedings.
  4. The right to be present at all public court proceedings related to the offense, unless the court determines that testimony by the victim would be materially affected if the victim heard other testimony at trial.
  5. The right to confer with the attorney for the Government in the case.
  6. The right to restitution.
  7. The right to information about the conviction, sentencing, imprisonment, and release of the offender.

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Contact Information

Kimberly Sanders
Victim-Witness Coordinator
314-539-6807 (office)

Sarah Pingsterhaus
Victim-Witness Specialist
314-539-2227 (office)

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Hotlines

National Domestic Violence: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
Child Abuse: 1-800-422-4453
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children: 1-800-843-5678
National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC): 1-800-394-2255
National Fraud Information Hotline : 1-800-876-7060
National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C): 1-800-251-3221

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