Victim Advocacy - FAQs
Do I have to go to all court dates?
It is your decision whether or not to attend court dates. If you receive a subpoena, you must obey the court order or you could be held in contempt of court.
Will the suspect have to pay my medical bills or property damage?
You will receive a victim impact statement (VIS) from our office asking for the losses you sustained as a victim of crime, as well as input you would like to give the judge regarding sentencing. Once you return the VIS, restitution can be calculated and requested when the defendant has been found guilty or pleads guilty. If you do not return the VIS, restitution will not be ordered. You may also pursue a civil case against the defendant.
When will my property that is being held for evidence be released?
At the end of the criminal justice process, you will receive a final disposition letter instructing you to contact the appropriate law enforcement agency.
How will I know the next court date?
If you are a victim of a violent crime you will receive a written notification for all critical stage court dates. If you are not a victim of a violent crime you may call the Victim Witness Unit to find out the next court date. (719.520.6049)
What is the difference between Victim Restitution and Victim Compensation?
Both Crime Victim Compensation and Restitution aim to minimize the financial burden placed on victims due to the crime.
The Crime Victim Compensation Act is intended to assist primary victims and their immediate family members who were victimized in violent crimes listed under the Victim Right’s Act. Please see the Victim Compensation page Victim Compensation for full eligibility requirements.
A public Board consisting of three members from the community are appointed to review victim compensation applications and award funds based on eligibility requirements and the availability of funds. Funds are limited to paying for the following categories of services: traditional and alternative mental health counseling, medical and dental expenses, stolen or damaged medical devices (i.e. prosthetics, eyeglasses, medication), lost wages, lost support, funeral expenses and repairing property damage to residential exterior locks, doors or windows.
The Victim Compensation Board does not have to wait for an arrest to be made or a case to be closed to award funds to victims of crime. It is more important that the victim reported the crime to law enforcement, they were not victimized due to any of their own wrongdoing and that they are cooperative with law enforcement and prosecution.
The District Attorney’s Office may request restitution be ordered by the Court in any case that was formally charged by the DA’s Office. Restitution payout orders are filed with the courts within 91 days of the case closing. If restitution is ordered, the defendant will be required to make regular payments to the court as part of their sentencing agreement and these payments will then be released to the victim. The Court works diligently to follow-up with defendants who have fallen behind on payments to collect the money owed to the victim(s) in their case.
Restitution serves victims of both non-violent and violent crimes. Restitution may be requested for stolen or damaged property, lost wages, or other expenses that were incurred by the victim due to the crime. Victim Compensation will frequently be included in Restitution payout orders to recover any money from the defendant that was paid out to the victim in that particular case by Victim Compensation.
Is the defendant held accountable through Victim Compensation?
Yes. The Victim Compensation Board will request the court to order the defendant to repay the Victim Compensation Fund through restitution in every case that is formally charged by the District Attorney’s Office.