Assaults are physical attacks or threats to inflict bodily harm to an individual. Victims of assault may have been pushed, shoved, slapped, punched or kicked. It can leave a victim with numerous injuries such as bruises, black eyes, and broken bones. Even if the victim has no physical injuries, they may suffer from PTSD . Being assaulted can be one of the most life-changing moments: it can make you afraid of your own shadow and it happens daily. In the year 2016, the number of U.S. residents age 12 or older who reported that they had experienced one or more violent criminal victimizations during the prior 6 months increased from 2.7 million in 2015 to 2.9 million in 2016. Things aren’t getting better, they’re getting worse and Jeffrey R Davis Law wants you to know that if you’ve been a victim of assault, you have rights : and you should know what they are.
You have a right to dignity, respect, and sensitivity
You have the right to be treated with courtesy, fairness, and care by law enforcement and other officials throughout the entire criminal justice process. This right is included in the constitutions of most states that have victims’ rights amendments and in the statutes of more than half the states.
Right to Be Informed
You should be informed of everything you need to exercise your rights and to seek services or resources that are available to you. Law enforcement officers can tell you how to contact criminal justice officials, what to expect in the criminal justice systems and to receive notifications of important events in the case such as the arrest and arraignment of the offender.
Right to Protection
You have the right to protection from threats, intimidation, or retaliation during criminal proceedings. Depending on the jurisdiction, victim’s may receive the following types of protection
- Police Escorts
- Witness Protection Programs
- Restraining Orders
Right to Apply for Compensation
All states provide crime victim’s some form of compensation to help recognize victim’s financial losses and to help them recover . Most states have a total amount of compensation they can give to the victim for each crime but not all crime-related expenses are covered. Types of losses that are usually covered are medical and counseling expenses, lost wages and funeral expenses.
Right to Restitution from the Offender
In many states, victims of crime have the right to restitution. This means the offender must pay to repair some of the damage that resulted from their crime(s) . The purpose of this right is to hold the offenders directly responsible to the victims for the financial harm they have caused.
Right to prompt return or personal property
Usually during a case, a criminal investigator must take some of the victim’s property as evidence for a criminal case. This right ensures that the victims receive the return of property to reduce any inconvenience it might cause and help restore their sense of security.
Right to a speedy trial
The right to a speedy trial means that the defendant is tried for the alleged crimes within a reasonable time after being arrested. This right ensures that the victim can gain closure and the ability to move on from the crime committed to him/her
Right to enforcement of victims right
To be meaningful, legal rights must be enforced and making sure that the victim’s rights are imposed in every state is crucial. States are beginning to pass laws to strengthen victims’ rights. Victim advocates represent crime victims in criminal, civil and administrative matters.
Jeffrey R Davis Law has worked with hundreds of victims of assault, battery, robbery, and other crimes and knows the importance of victims knowing their rights. If you or a loved one has been a victim of assault, don’t hesitate to call Jeffrey R Davis,P.A. and schedule a free consultation at 305-577-3777