3 things to know about victim assistance

GREENFIELD — Victims of crime can find support and information through the Hancock County Prosecutor’s Victim Assistance Program, which will have an informational event Thursday at 3 p.m. in the Courthouse Plaza, 9 E. Main St., in Greenfield.

The prosecutor’s Victim Assistance program was started earlier this year as a way to help crime victims learn about services available to them as their cases travel through the court system. Organizers said they hope the event will further victims’ understanding of their rights.

Here are three things to know about the event:

1. It raises awareness

April 19 to 25 is National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Justice. This year’s theme revolves around engaging communities and empowering victims. Similar causes, such as child abuse and sexual assault, are brought to the forefront in April as well.

2. Victims will speak

Two local crime victims are expected to speak at the event about their experience with the legal system and various community services made available to them. One, a domestic violence survivor, will share insight on how crime victim services have grown in recent years.

Another, a local business owner who was a victim of fraud, is expected to discuss navigating the court system with the help of a victim advocate. Organizers said they are hopeful those who attend the event will better understand that all crime victims and their cases are different. 

3. Advocates are available

Hancock County victim advocates Katie Molinder and Kelly Buzan will be at the event to answer questions. Molinder is the prosecutor’s victim advocate and works with victims of various crimes. Buzan works for Madison County-based Alternatives Inc. but has an office at the Greenfield Police Department. She specializes in aiding victims of domestic violence.

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Caitlin VanOverberghe is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3237 or cvanoverberghe@greenfieldreporter.com.