The United States Attorney's Office Victim/Witness Assistance Program was developed to ensure that victims of federal crimes are treated with fairness and respect as they journey through the federal criminal justice system. This program carries out the mandates of the Federal Victim and Witness Protection Act of 1982, the Victims' Rights and Restitution Act of 1990, the Victims of Child Abuse Act of 1990, the Justice for All Act of 2004 and other victim related legislation. These victim/witness assistance and protection laws apply to all victims and witnesses of federal crime who have suffered physical, financial, or emotional trauma.
The Office of the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee (EDTN) is committed to ensuring that federal crime victims are afforded all rights to which they are entitled by law. In addition, the Office of the United States Attorney for the EDTN will ensure that victims and witnesses are treated with compassion, respect, and fairness. The Victim Witness program for our district provides assistance to victims and witnesses of federal crimes while they are involved with the criminal justice system. Services provided to crime victims and witnesses by the U.S. Attorney’s Office include:
- Referrals to counseling, medical and other social services
- Court accompaniment
- Special services for child victims, the elderly, and handicapped victims
- Crime victims compensation claims assistance
- Assistance with completing victim impact statements
- Assistance with travel and lodging for out of town witnesses
- Support witnesses throughout court proceedings
- Assistance with restitution issues
Questions concerning federal crime victims’ and witnesses’ rights or information regarding the U.S. Attorney’s Office Victim Witness Program can be addressed to:
Amy Russell, Victim Witness Coordinator
Paige Chiaro, Victim Witness Specialist
Victim and Witness Resources and Links:
- Restitution For Victims of Federal Crimes
- Victim Notification System
- Victim Impact Statements, Know Your Rights
- Victim Witness Assistance Brochure Program
- Victims of Robbery - Bank Employees
- EDTN Right To Be Heard
- Elder Justice
- Federal Domestic Violence Laws
- Office for Victims of Crime
- Resources For Victims of Fraud and Identity Theft
- Federal crime victims have the following rights under the Justice for All Act (18 U.S.C. § 3771):
- The right to be reasonably protected from the accused;
- The right to reasonable, accurate, and timely notice of any public court proceeding, or any parole proceeding, involving the crime or of any release or escape of the accused;
- The right to be informed in a timely manner of any plea bargain or deferred prosecution agreement;
- The right to be informed of CVRA rights and VRRA services and to be provided contact information for VICTIMS' RIGHTS OMBUDSMAN.
- The right not to be excluded from any such public court proceeding, unless the court, after receiving clear and convincing evidence, determines that testimony by the victim would be materially altered if the victim heard other testimony at that proceeding;
- The right to be reasonably heard at any public proceeding in the district court involving the release, plea, sentencing, or any parole proceeding;
- The reasonable right to confer with the attorney for the Government in the case;
- The right to full and timely restitution as provided in law;
- The right to proceedings free from unreasonable delay; and
The right to be treated with fairness and with respect for the victim's dignity and privacy.
We will make our best efforts to ensure victims are accorded the rights described. Victims may seek the advice of an attorney with respect to these rights.
Information for Victims in Large Cases:
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee is committed to ensuring that victims of crime remain an integral part of the criminal justice process. In large-scale cases, individual contact with victims is difficult. Accordingly, we have created a case webpage to provide information and updates on the case to victims. If you believe you are a victim of one of these cases, please visit this page often to view recent case developments.