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Victim Witness Assistance

The Victim/Witness Unit of the United States Attorney’s Office provides services for victims and witnesses of federal crimes including notification of a victim’s rights; case status information; travel arrangements for witnesses; education regarding the federal criminal justice system; referrals to various social service and medical organizations; special services for child victims, the elderly and handicapped victims; court accompaniment; and compensation claims assistance.

Victims and witnesses serve a vital role in the prosecution of federal offenses. Without their assistance, prosecuting federal offenders would often prove difficult. It is our goal to ensure that victims and witnesses are treated fairly and with dignity, and that they are fully afforded all rights provided to them under both federal and state law.

If you consider yourself to be in immediate danger, please call 911 or contact your local law enforcement agency.

Victim Rights

As a victim of crime, you have certain rights. Learn your victim’s rights within the Federal, Circuit, and District Court Systems.  

  • Federal Crime Victims' Rights: Please understand that these rights apply only to victims of the counts charged in federal court, and thus you may not be able to exercise all of these rights if the crime to which you are a victim was not charged. For the victims of the counts which are charged, the rights listed above may be enforced in court and you can seek the advice of an attorney with respect to these rights. As the victim of a charged offense, if you believe that your rights have been violated by a Department of Justice employee, you may be able to file a complaint with the Department’s Office of Victims’ Rights Ombudsman.
  • State of Maryland Victims’ Rights: victims-rights-chart.pdf (

For Non-Emergency Aid or to Report a Crime, Contact the Appropriate Toll-Free Helpline

If you think you are a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19, you can report it without leaving your home by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form.

If you are a victim of identity theft remember that when dealing with the authorities and financial institutions, it is very important to:

  1. File a police report
  2. Keep a log of all conversations (including dates, names, and phone numbers)
  3. Note time spent and any expenses incurred, in case you are able to request restitution in a later judgment or conviction.
  4. Confirm conversations in writing and send all correspondence by certified mail, return receipt requested
  5. Keep copies of all letters and documents.
  6. Place a fraud on your credit report
  7. Check your credit reports periodically
  8. Close accounts that you believe to have been fraudulently opened

The Federal Trade Commission recommends these immediate recovery steps if you are a victim of identity theft:

  1. Call the companies where you know fraud occurred
  2. Place a fraud alert and get your credit reports
  3. Report identity theft to the Federal Trade Commission (En Espanol): 1-877-438-4338

Federal Trade Commission Identity Theft Publications:

If you suspect child abuse or neglect, please contact these local resources, and familiarize yourself with potential signs of child abuse:

Human trafficking may be occurring in your own community. Click here to learn possible indicators of human trafficking. To report suspected human trafficking, please contact:

Updated May 11, 2023