If you have been a victim of a crime, you might feel overwhelmed by the legal system and its complex procedures. However, it’s important to know that you have certain rights. The exact rights to which a victim is entitled will depend on the criminal charges against the defendant. All victims of criminal offenses have the following rights;
Right to Information
The RIGHT to be given information about the crime, how the criminal justice system works, the rights of victims, and the availability of services.
The District Attorney has a staff of prosecutors, legal assistants and victim service coordinators to assist you through the process. To request services and further notifications, you should fill out and return the Victim Impact Statement to the District Attorney’s Office.
Right to Notice of Court Proceedings
The RIGHT, upon request, to reasonable accurate and timely notice of court proceedings.
If you want to be kept up to date on court proceedings, conviction, or sentencing of the accused, you must opt-in for notification services through the Victim Impact Statement and keep the District Attorney’s Office up to date with your contact information.
Right to Disposition
The RIGHT, upon request, to receive information about the conviction, final disposition and the sentence.
If the defendant is found, or pleads guilty, and is sentenced to a confinement facility, you have a right to information about appeals and release dates. If the defendant appeals the case, upon your request, your information will be forwarded to the Attorney General for assistance through the appellate process.
If the defendant is found not guilty, your case is over and will not proceed any further.
Right to Information of Accused’s Sentence
The RIGHT, upon request, to receive notification of escape, release, proposed parole or pardon or notice of a reprieve or commutation of the accused’s sentence.
To receive information about a defendant’s confinement or release, register with NC SAVAN (North Carolina Statewide Automated Victim Assistance and Notification) at 1-877-NC-SAVAN. NC SAVAN is a statewide notification system that will notify you should the defendant be released from jail.
To receive information about people on probation, in prison or on parole, contact the NC Department of Public Safety, Victim Services at 1-866-719-0108 to enroll in their notification program.
Right to Confer
The RIGHT to reasonably confer with the District Attorney’s Office.
Please contact the District Attorney’s Office for assistance.
Right to Present Views and Concerns
The RIGHT to present the victim’s views and concerns in writing, to the Governor or agency considering action, that could result in the release of the accused.
Right to Be Present
The RIGHT, upon request, to be present and heard at court proceedings involving the plea, conviction, sentencing, or release.
The District Attorney’s Office can assist you in developing your Victim Impact Statement for the court.
Right to Receive Restitution
The RIGHT to receive restitution when ordered by the court.
Your Victim Impact Statement should include any financial loss you have experienced. In the event of non-payment of restitution, contact the NC Department of Public Safety, Victim Services at 1-866-719-0108.
How Can We Help?
The North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys offers a wealth of valuable information and assistance to prosecutors and their law enforcement partners. If you are unable to locate the answers you require, please do not hesitate to reach out to our team members. We are dedicated to providing guidance and direction to ensure that the needs of prosecutors are met with the utmost professionalism and respect.