410-996-5342 (Valda Rotolo - Circuit Court)
410-996-2830 (District Court)
410-996-5336 (Rita Buckland - Juvenile)
Victim-Witness Assistance Program
If you are a victim of crime, you have certain rights that are assured to you:
- to be informed;
- to be present;
- to be heard;
The Victim-Witness Assistance Program will provide the following basic services:
- up to date case information
- explanation of legal terminology and court procedures
- referrals to community resources
- court preparation and accompaniment
- help with preparing injury compensation from and Victim Impact Statements
- restitution information
- community education
Services NOT Provided by Victim-Witness Assistance
- Witness Fees or payment for lost wages.
- Transportation. It is your responsibility to find transportation to court. However, if this is a problem for you, please let us know right away.
- Child Care. Please try to leave your children with a responsible friend, relative or professional on the day of trial and for pretrial conferences. If this is a problem for you, let us know right away.
If You are a Victim of a Crime or a Witness to a Crime
Be sure that we know what your expectations and concerns are regarding this case. Let your Victim-Witness Coordinator know if there are any unusual problems that will make your court experience difficult. Cooperate with police, prosecutors, and your Victim-Witness Coordinator. They will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome.
It is important to remember that your credibility is the most important factor a judge or jury will consider when evaluating your testimony and could be the difference between a guilty or not guilty finding. Always be completely truthful when speaking to investigators, attorneys and especially when testifying on the witness stand. A judge or jury could disregard all of your testimony if you are untruthful about even the smallest detail. Your job is to give the most accurate and truthful description of the events you observed--not to say what you think the prosecution wants to hear, or what you think is most likely to result in a conviction.
1. Make sure that the police and prosecutors have a current and accurate home address (including a P.O. Box number if you have one) and telephone number for you.
2. Check with the State's Attorney's Office frequently regarding the status of the case. When you receive a subpoena, call the State's Attorney's Office to schedule a meeting with the assigned prosecutor.
3. Always respond promptly to letters or phone messages from the State's Attorney's Office. Time could be of the essence.
4. Make notes for yourself regarding the crime you observed and keep them in a safe place for your reference. You may be called to testify months after the crime occurred.
5. Keep all physical evidence of the crime in a safe place and bring it to trial. Make sure the prosecutor knows you have the evidence.
6. Request identification from any person who attempts to speak to you regarding this case.
7. You may be contacted by an attorney or investigator for the Defendant. If you choose, you may speak to them about the case, but you are not required to do so. If you choose to speak to a representative for the Defendant, For any statement you make may be used at trial to attack your credibility. If you do choose to make a statement make sure you are thorough and completely honest.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Board
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board provides financial assistance for victims of crime. The Board may compensate victims who suffer from physical injury by helping with medical expenses, and by providing payment for part of their loss.
In cases of homicide, the Board may assist with funeral expenses and loss on the part of the victim's dependents. The Criminal Injuries Compensation operates under the auspices of the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.
Who may file a claim?
- A person who suffers physical injury as a result of a crime.
- A surviving spouse or child of a homicide victim.
- Any person who is dependent for principal support from a homicide victim.
- Any person who assumed responsibility for funeral expenses of a homicide.
What must you do to qualify?
- You must report the crime to the police within 48 hours.
- You must have incurred at least $100 in out-of-pocket expenses.
How soon must you file your claim?
- A claim should be filed within 3 years of the date of the crime.
How do I file a claim?
- Claim forms may be obtained by calling the Criminal Injuries Compensation.
To request claim forms or for additional information, call 410-585-3010 (TTY 800-735-2258) or contact Valda Rotolo at 410-996-5335.
How much may the Board award?
|Medical expenses:||up to $45,000|
|Disability:||up to $25,000|
|Crime Scene Cleanup:||$250|
The maximum allowable award in any claim is $45,000. Some limitations may apply.
(Information about the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board reprinted from the Crime Victims' Assistance brochure)