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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Alabama

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Local Agencies and Law Enforcement to Present Park Celebration for Crime Victims and Survivors

Local Agencies and Law Enforcement to Present Park Celebration for Crime Victims and Survivors


BIRMINGHAM Forty social service, support and law enforcement agencies will present “One Heart in the Park” on Sunday, April 7, as an uplifting day to stand in solidarity with the community's victims of crime.

First Assistant U.S. Attorney Lloyd Peeples, FBI Special Agent in Charge Johnnie Sharp, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, Jefferson County Sheriff Mark Pettway, University of Alabama at Birmingham Police Chief Anthony Purcell, Birmingham Police Chief Patrick D. Smith, and VOCAL (Victims of Crime and Leniency) Director Janette Grantham will join a host of social service organizations that will be at the community festival to provide information about resources and support for crime victims and their families. The community festival is part of National Crime Victims' Rights Week 2019. The event will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on the UAB Green, 1501 University Blvd., Birmingham. Admission is free.

The event will offer complimentary refreshments, a children’s play area, live entertainment by Lipsey Switch, local fire and law enforcement equipment and booths where participating agencies will offer services and support. The festival is made possible through the support of the Department of Justice Office of Victims of Crime, the National Center for Victims of Crime and the Junior League of Birmingham.

“One Heart in the Park” grew out of a desire to connect crime victims and members of the community with agencies and advocates that can provide assistance and services. “This occasion will emphasize how the crime victims’ field can better ensure that every crime victim has access to services and support, and how professionals, organizations, and communities can work in tandem to reach all victims,” said Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office Victim Assistance Coordinator Wanda Miller.

Increasing the public’s awareness of the array of services for crime victims, survivors and their families can be a critical service to the community by promoting healthy coping skills and support measures for those affected by crime, Miller said.

There will be a space in the park dedicated to honoring crime victims by presenting their photographs or personal statements. Those attending the event who have loved ones who were victims of crime are encouraged to bring a photograph for display, and anyone who has been a victim of crime is encouraged to bring a statement of his or her victimization. The display will enable crime victims to express the effects and challenges of being victimized, and put a face to their stories. Supplies and assistance will be available to anyone wanting to participate in the display.

According to the “Crime in Alabama” report compiled by the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, there were 25,188 Violent Crimes reported in Alabama in 2016, a 13 percent increase over 2015. On average, there were 69 violent crimes reported per day in 2016.

Allison Dearing, executive director of One Place Metro Alabama Family Justice Center, emphasized the critical importance of a community offering supportive services for victims and survivors. “We are fortunate to have so many agencies in the Greater Birmingham area who seek to provide counseling, support groups, financial assistance, advocacy, and other needed services to individuals and their families who have been impacted by crime. If timely connections are made to appropriate resources, we know that these services have the potential to impact victims of crime in a positive way, especially in the first days and weeks following victimization.”

EVENT:            One Heart in the Park

DATE:               Sunday, April 7, 2019

TIME:               2 PM – 4 PM

LOCATION:     UAB Green, 1501 University Blvd, Birmingham, Alabama

COST:               FREE

AGE:                All Ages

CONTACT:       WANDA MILLER - 205-731-2814 JCSO 205-296-3837 Cell

Participating Agencies


U.S. Attorney’s Office Northern District of Alabama
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms
Homeland Security
Alabama Attorney General’s Office
FBI Birmingham
Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office
Birmingham Police Department
UAB Police & Public Safety Department
Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office - Birmingham Division
Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office - Bessemer Cutoff Division
Crisis Center of Birmingham
One Place Metro Alabama Family Justice Center
Junior League of Birmingham
Hispanic Interest Coalition Alabama -  HICA
YWCA Birmingham
DHR - Bessemer
Magic City Acceptance Center
Parents Against Violence
Oasis Counseling
Children’s of Alabama - PIRC
VA Outreach - Birmingham VA Medical Center
VOCAL - Victims of Crime & Leniency
Crime Stoppers of Metro Alabama
American Legion Post 911
Prescott House Children’s Advocacy Center
MADD - Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Jefferson County Housing Authority
Impact Family Counseling
Gateway Counseling Center
Clay House Children’s Advocacy Center
21st District American Legion
One Roof
Volunteer Lawyers Birmingham
Center Point Fire & Rescue
CAPS Birmingham
Resource Recovery Center
Moms Demand Action
Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services
Jefferson County 911
BPRBS – Black People Run Bike And Swim



Updated April 2, 2019