Updated Washoe Co. DA Website Provides Critical Information for Crime Victims
Nevada, October 2020 - As communities across America mark Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October, the Washoe County District Attorney’s office is providing clarity on victims’ rights with a newly updated website.
Visitors to the site will have easy access to concise information about victims’ rights, advocacy for crime victims, and details on the constitutional voice guaranteed for all Nevadans thanks to the passage of Marsy’s Law.
“Supporting victims of crime is my top priority. Now, more than ever, the Washoe District Attorney’s Office remains committed to ensuring justice is equitably served for those victimized by criminals in our state. This important awareness month provides an opportunity for education about crime victims’ rights and community invigoration towards their protection.” Washoe County District Attorney Chris Hicks.
For more information, you may visit the Washoe County DA’s website at https://www.washoecounty.us/da/ and click on MORE along the top right, and head to “Victim Information.” The page includes critical details of rights now enshrined in our Constitution.
Marsy’s Law for Nevada was overwhelmingly approved by voters in November of 2018. As a result, Nevada victims have protected rights to information, consideration, and a reasonable voice through the judicial process.
Lynda Tache, State Director for Marsy’s Law for Nevada says, “Especially now, with the increased challenges and domestic violence trends linked to COVID-19, Marsy’s Law for Nevada is more important than ever. We’re honored to recognize legal standouts such as District Attorney Chris Hicks. He is among those leading the way in Nevada to ensure that Marsy’s Law requirements are fulfilled for victims of crime. The Washoe County DA’s website provides clear and concise information mapping out victims’ rights and requirements in Nevada.”
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH
Domestic Violence Awareness Month recognizes the work of organizations and agencies providing shelter to survivors, and action to reduce cases nationwide. Businesses and individuals show their support and GO PURPLE in October. #DVAM2020 #VictimsRightsNV #GoPurpleNV
Nevada was already known for having one of the highest rates in the U.S. for adults and children victimized by domestic violence. Now the emotional, financial, and social impacts of COVID-19 are taking a toll. The Nevada Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence gathers statistics from multiple shelters/agencies across Nevada. The averages for January through June 2020 for certain services rose sharply compared to 2019:
- NCEDSV reports Nevada’s combined domestic violence shelter totals amounted to a 42% increase in adult/child “bed-nights” provided. (i.e. placement in a shelter or safe-haven away from home)
- The total number of Hotline/Crisis intervention calls among shelters from January to June 2020 also increased by 42% over 2019 statistics.
- Raw numbers for Jan.-June 2020 were 52,751 total “bed-nights” provided, and 13,562 Hotline Calls to agencies reporting to NCEDSV.
Marsy’s Law for Nevada Guarantees Crime Victims:
- The Right to receive information about their rights, and the services available to crime victims.
- Right to be treated with fairness and respect throughout the criminal justice process.
- Right to be notified of a defendant’s impending release, and be protected from the defendant.
- Right to notice of all public proceedings in the case.
- Right to be reasonably heard, upon request, at all public proceedings regarding the case.
- Right to reasonably confer with the prosecuting agency, upon request, regarding the case.
- Right to full and timely restitution.
History of Marsy’s Law
The effort is named after Marsalee “Marsy” Nicholas who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend in California in 1983. A week later he was released pending his court proceedings and went face to face with the victim’s family, who had no idea he was out of jail. Today her family is working to secure a voice and protection for victims and their families, nationwide. Nearly 140-million people, or 40-percent of all Americans, now receive protected rights under Marsy’s Law. www.MarsysLawforNV.com
Marsy’s Law Media Contacts
Washoe Co. DA Contact
Michelle Bays/PIO & Chief Investigator
Marsy’s Law Media Contacts
Deborah Clayton & Kim Schofield