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Victim Services in Rural Law Enforcement
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Publication Date: April 2009
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Law enforcement officers are often the first professionals to approach victims after a crime and may be the only contact victims have with the criminal justice system.1 Increasingly, law enforcement officials are training officers to better work with victims and are establishing victim assistance components in their agencies. Many rural agencies, however, face challenges in making these changes.

Victim Services in Rural Law Enforcement explores creative and economical ways for rural law enforcement agencies to meet the needs of victims at the crime scene and during followup contact, despite the barriers. Based on the experiences of 17 sites that received OVC funding to establish or enhance victim assistance efforts in their law enforcement agencies, the publication—

  • Reviews the grant project.
  • Highlights site activities.
  • Identifies core elements and challenges of rural law enforcement-based victim service programs.
  • Offers a blueprint for rural law enforcement agencies interested in initiating their own victim service efforts.

For more detailed summaries highlighting individual site efforts, see the Site Summaries section.