VICTIM'S BILL OF RIGHTS 

"The victim was amazing on the stand. With two pretrials and a jury trial it took a lot out of this young girl. I saw a lot of courage from sitting on the stand for six days, having to relive the trauma and testify against a man who she honestly thought she cared for. I have to say, every time she testified it was like a piece of her mind opened up to the reality of the situation she was in.

 

The victim broke down on the stand several times, but always came back with a stronger attitude and willingness to push forward even if the questions seemed to be repetitive to her. During the first pretrial she was on the stand for four days. During the second pretrial she was on the stand for seven days and for the jury trial she was on the stand for six days.

 

Personally, I sat with her for the second pretrial and jury trial; and that was physically, emotionally, and psychologically draining for me. I can't imagine someone so young having to do that three times let alone without having any support system with her. I needed emotional support after that.

(Update two years later) I feel a sense of relief knowing that she is in a good space. I am also proud that she has come up with her own conclusion and is processing what has happened to her. To see her come so far, really brings forth that statement of planting seeds."

   

                                                                                                                                                                                                           - Victim Advocate

Marsy’s Law significantly expands the rights of victims in California. Under Marsy’s Law, the California Constitution article I, § 28, section (b) now provides victims with the following enumerated rights:

  1. To be treated with fairness and respect for his or her privacy and dignity, and to be free from intimidation, harassment, and abuse, throughout the criminal or juvenile justice process.​

  2. To be reasonably protected from the defendant and persons acting on behalf of the defendant.

  3. To have the safety of the victim and the victim’s family considered in fixing the amount of bail and release conditions for the defendant.

  4. To prevent the disclosure of confidential information or records to the defendant, the defendant’s attorney, or any other person acting on behalf of the defendant, which could be used to locate or harass the victim or the victim’s family or which disclose confidential communications made in the course of medical or counseling treatment, or which are otherwise privileged or confidential by law.

  5. To refuse an interview, deposition, or discovery request by the defendant, the defendant’s attorney, or any other person acting on behalf of the defendant, and to set reasonable conditions on the conduct of any such interview to which the victim consents.

  6. To reasonable notice of and to reasonably confer with the prosecuting agency, upon request, regarding, the arrest of the defendant if known by the prosecutor, the charges filed, the determination whether to extradite the defendant, and, upon request, to be notified of and informed before any pretrial disposition of the case.

  7. To reasonable notice of all public proceedings, including delinquency proceedings, upon request, at which the defendant and the prosecutor are entitled to be present and of all parole or other post-conviction release proceedings, and to be present at all such proceedings.

  8. To be heard, upon request, at any proceeding, including any delinquency proceeding, involving a post-arrest release decision, plea, sentencing, post-conviction release decision, or any proceeding in which a right of the victim is at issue.

  9. To a speedy trial and a prompt and final conclusion of the case and any related post-judgment proceedings.

  10. To provide information to a probation department official conducting a pre-sentence investigation concerning the impact of the offense on the victim and the victim’s family and any sentencing recommendations before the sentencing of the defendant.

  11. To receive, upon request, the pre-sentence report when available to the defendant, except for those portions made confidential by law.

  12. To be informed, upon request, of the conviction, sentence, place and time of incarceration, or other disposition of the defendant, the scheduled release date of the defendant, and the release of or the escape by the defendant from custody.

  13. To restitution.

    1. It is the unequivocal intention of the People of the State of California that all persons who suffer losses as a result of criminal activity shall have the right to seek and secure restitution from the persons convicted of the crimes causing the losses they suffer.

    2. Restitution shall be ordered from the convicted wrongdoer in every case, regardless of the sentence or disposition imposed, in which a crime victim suffers a loss.

    3. All monetary payments, monies, and property collected from any person who has been ordered to make restitution shall be first applied to pay the amounts ordered as restitution to the victim.

  14. To the prompt return of property when no longer needed as evidence.

  15. To be informed of all parole procedures, to participate in the parole process, to provide information to the parole authority to be considered before the parole of the offender, and to be notified, upon request, of the parole or other release of the offender.

  16. To have the safety of the victim, the victim’s family, and the general public considered before any parole or other post-judgment release decision is made.

  17. To be informed of the rights enumerated in paragraphs (1) through (16).

** If you are a victim of a crime in Orange County and your case is processed in the criminal justice system, you have the right to have a Victim Advocate to help support you through the process as outlined under Marsy's Law. In Orange County, the Victim Advocate service is provided through Waymakers.

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