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Victim Witness Assistance

Crime Victims' Rights image

Crime Victims' Rights image created by Josie, a Wheeling-area middle school student.

The Victim Witness Assistance Unit provides assistance to victims and witnesses of federal crimes while they are involved with the criminal justice system. Services include:

  • Information on court proceedings and case status
  • 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

Cases that are prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney are referred to our office by investigative agencies. The U.S. Attorney’s office begins its responsibilities to victims and witnesses once federal charges are filed, and the charges are made public. Victims may call (304) 234-0100 with any questions.

WITNESSES

If you have been subpoenaed by the U.S Attorney's Office to testify in Federal Court or Grand Jury, please contact our Victim Witness Coordinator at (304) 234-0100.

VICTIMS

Federal Crime Victims’ have rights as set forth in the Justice for All Act of 2004: 

RIGHTS OF CRIME VICTIMS

18 U.S.C. 3771 (a) A victim of a crime has the following rights:

1. The right to be reasonably protected from the accused.

2. 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.

3. 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.

4. The right to be reasonably heard at any public proceeding in the district court involving release, plea, sentencing, or any parole proceeding.

5. The reasonable right to confer with the attorney for the Government in the case.

6. The right to full and timely restitution as provided in law.

7. The right to proceedings free from unreasonable delay.

8. The right to be treated with fairness and with respect for the victim's dignity and privacy.

9. The right to be informed in a timely manner of any plea bargain or deferred prosecution agreement.

10. The right to be informed of the rights under this section and the services described in section 503(c) of the Victims' Rights and Restitution Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 10607(c)) and provided contact information for the Office of the Victims' Rights Ombudsman of the Department of Justice.

As a crime victim, you can seek the advice of an attorney with respect to these rights. This law is effective October 30, 2004.

View the Victim Witness Brochure here.

If you are a victim of a crime, or a witness to a crime, learn more about what to expect in the justice system here.

If you have any questions regarding your rights as a crime victim, please call the Victim Witness Coordinator at the United States Attorney's Office at (304) 234-0100.

RESOURCES

Updated April 20, 2020

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