Isenberg & Hewitt, PC | A Business And Personal Injury Law Firm | Since 1989
Isenberg & Hewitt, PC | A Business And Personal Injury Law Firm | Since 1989
To talk with a lawyer call (770) 901-2666
Isenberg & Hewitt, PC | A Business And Personal Injury Law Firm | Since 1989
To talk with a lawyer call (770) 901-2666

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Get the 411: Resources Available to Crime Victims in Georgia

On Behalf of | Apr 23, 2024 | Victims Of Crimes

National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, an annual event observed every April, raises awareness about the rights and services available to crime victims across the country. The week is dedicated to creating space for victims of crime and their families to share their stories of pain, loss and trauma, and serves as a time to advocate for victims’ rights and provide support to survivors.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation, in its 2022 summary of crime statistics, reported more than 200,000 reported cases of criminal activity, with robbery, motor vehicle theft, burglary, aggravated assault and property theft among the highest cases reported. There are countless other instances of violent crime and abuse, and those victims deserve support. Thankfully, Georgia is a state with Marsy’s Law – the constitutionally protected crime victims’ bill of rights, which was enacted in 2018. One of these rights includes reasonable and timely notice of the status of the accused and any court proceedings.

To assist crime victims across the state of Georgia and fulfil Marsy’s Law, the Governor’s Office, the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council (CJCC) and the Criminal Case Data Exchange Board (CDX) have launched the statewide automated victim notification system (AVN). This cutting-edge platform uses advanced technology to provide timely and accurate information to victims, ensuring they are informed about the custody status of offenders and updates on their case.

In honor of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, Georgia residents should take the time to educate themselves on the available resources for crime victims and be prepared if someone confides in them about victimization. Here are some of the services and programs available for Georgia crime victims:

Phone Services and Hotlines

In times of crisis, knowing where to turn for help can be difficult. Thankfully, there are many phone services and hotlines available to aid and support. Here are just a few of the resources available to those in need:

  • If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, the Georgia Domestic Violence Hotline can provide help and resources. To speak with a trained professional, call 800-334-2836.
  • Georgia Cares offers free health insurance counseling to Medicare/Medicaid beneficiaries and Georgians aged 60 and older and reports suspected medical and insurance fraud. Call their 24-hour hotline: 844-842-3678.
  • Concerned about a missing or exploited child? The National Hotline for Missing and Exploited Children is available 24/7. Call 800-843-5678 to report a tip or get help.
  • To learn more about preventing child abuse and neglect, contact Prevent Child Abuse Georgia at 800-244-5373. They offer resources and support to parents, caregivers and community members.
  • 2-1-1 is a free and confidential service that helps people in Georgia and elsewhere find local resources. They maintain the most comprehensive database of community services available.

State Departments and Services

Navigating the criminal and civil justice systems can be a challenging and overwhelming experience for victims of crime. Fortunately, there are several state departments and services in Georgia that assist victims in various ways.

  • The Georgia Department of Human Services Adult Protective Services (APS) investigates reports of abuse, neglect and exploitation of older Georgians and adults with disabilities who do not live in long-term care facilities.
  • The Georgia Office of Victim Services collaborates with the Department of Community Supervision to keep victims informed on their offender’s status, location and assist with restitution issues, “no contact” order enforcement and programs promoting victim restoration.
  • The Prosecuting Attorney Council for Georgia have victim-witness personnel available in all 49 judicial circuits and 27 counties of Georgia to aid victims in navigating the court process, provide referrals to community resources and notify them of court proceedings.
  • The Georgia Criminal Justice Coordinating Council supports innovative programs and services financially and programmatically to improve criminal justice and empower victims and prevent future crimes in the state of Georgia.

State Programs and Compensation Funds for Victims of Crime

In addition to the physical and emotional toll of being victimized, there are also financial burdens that can arise as a result. Fortunately, there are state programs and compensation funds that can help victims of crime recover and rebuild their lives.

  • The CJCC Victims Compensation program provides financial assistance to victims of violent crime, including compensation for medical expenses, counseling services, lost wages and funeral expenses, and can provide up to $25,000 in compensation per victim.
  • Georgia Legal Aid provides free legal assistance to low-income individuals and families in Georgia, including victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and other crimes. Their services include legal representation, advice and education, and can help victims navigate the complex legal system and protect their rights.

As we acknowledge National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, it is important to recognize the collaborative efforts of various organizations in Georgia to provide crime victims with support, transparency and dignity, reinforcing the importance of victim rights and enhancing public safety.

Are you or someone you love a victim of crime? If you need legal assistance, please contact the Isenberg & Hewitt office for a free consultation.