Victim & Witness Services


One household in three is touched by crime every year in the USA.  Crime victims feel shocked, angered and shamed, as well as helpless and confused.  The Criminal Justice System has traditionally ignored the needs of the victim while protecting the rights of the accused. What you need to know if you are a crime victim...

Criminal Justice System

Understanding the Criminal Justice System is essential to the crime victim if they are to feel that their rights have not been ignored. The philosophy behind the system has been that the crime is an offense against society rather than the individual. The victim is not a legal party to the proceedings and has only limited opportunity to influence those proceedings.  The California Victim/Witness Program is a statewide effort to provide crime victims and witnesses emotional support during the aftermath of crime and guidance through the maze of the criminal justice system. The Sierra County Victim Assistance Program helps victims feel they have been properly served by their criminal justice system.

We offer free and confidential services to crime victims and witnesses:

  • Restraining Order Assistance (guidance in obtaining a restraining order)
  • Orientation to the Criminal Justice System (understanding how things work)
  • Case Status/Disposition (what is happening to the case and where it is in the justice system)
  • Court Escort (emotional support in court for victims & witnesses)
  • Crisis Intervention (counseling, reassurance and support helping victims cope with emotional trauma)
  • Referral Counseling (directing victims to other agencies and resources for assistance)
  • Victim Impact Statement (help in preparation of statement for the Probation Dept which can affect sentencing)
  • Creditor Intervention(explanation to creditors and employer of late payments or work missed due to reasons connected to crime)
  • Restitution Assistance (help in obtaining court ordered restitution)
  • Filing Victims of Crime Compensation Claims
  • Property Recovery (returning property held as evidence)
  • Parole Notification (when an inmate is to be released)