Durham Police Department Commemorates National Crime Victims’ Rights Week,
DURHAM, N.C. - Durham Police Department’s (DPD) Community Services Division in commemoration of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW), April 7–13, 2019, is hosting events to raise awareness about crime victims’ issues and rights and introduce the community to the important resources and services available. According to the most recent Bureau of Justice Statistics’ National Crime Victimization Survey, U.S. residents age 12 or older experienced 3.1 million violent victimizations and U.S. households experienced an estimated 13.3 million property crimes in 2017.
DPD’s 2019 observance is supported by a National Crime Victims’ rights week community awareness project sub-grant awarded by the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators under a Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. DPD’s Victim/Witness Services Unit has coordinated the following events to commemorate the advancement of victims’ rights and highlight issues surrounding victimization:
Saturday, April 6: Police Athletic League (PAL) Families Outreach, 9 a.m. to noon, Jordan High School (6806 Garrett Road – Durham)
Tuesday, April 9: 18th Annual Crime Victims’ Rights Week Remembrance Ceremony, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., Department of Cultural Resources, Auditorium of Archives and History (109 East Jones, Street – Raleigh)
Thursday, April 11: Rays of Hope Gathering and Reception, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Durham Police Headquarters, 602 E. Main Street – Durham). A panel discussion will include a speaker from the Kiran organization which provides services to South Asian victims of Domestic Violence across North Carolina; a married couple (Durham peace rally organizers) whose son was a homicide victim; and a college student whose family, neighbors and friends were victims of an armed robbery incident.
The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) leads communities throughout the country in their annual observances of NCVRW by promoting victims’ rights and honoring crime victims and those who advocate on their behalf. This year’s theme – Honoring Our Past. Creating Hope for the Future. – encourages commemoration, honor, and respect toward the crime victim advocates, allied
professionals, and selfless volunteers who have courageously worked for increased rights for crime victims. OVC will host the annual National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C., to honor outstanding individuals and programs that serve victims of crime.
For more information on DPD’s 2019 observance of National Crime Victim’s Rights Week and how to assist victims in your community, contact Jennifer Hinchey, Victim/Witness Services Coordinator, (919) 560-4951 ext. 29291 or email [email protected].
DPD’s Victim Services Unit
The Durham Police Department’s Victim Services Unit was established in 1997 – a significant milestone in positioning the agency to better implement, and advocate for, services that reinforce victims’ rights. DPD Victim Advocates provide crisis intervention services; coordinate referrals to community resources; lend investigative support to DPD units and agencies; provide assistance to victims when completing/filing victim compensation forms; advise victims of their rights; educate victims about the criminal justice system and what to expect; and, upon request, accompany clients to medical appointments.
In 2018, DPD’s Victim/Witness Services Unit assisted 2,124 victims of Part 1 Crimes; provided 3,259 referrals to various services; and assisted 234 victims in completing forms to apply for State compensation for a diversity of needs – including costs associated with medical care, counseling, lost wages, etc.