The Victim/Witness staff of the of the St. Louis County Attorney's Office provide a variety of services to victims and witnesses of crime and help to ensure compliance with the Minnesota Crime Victim Rights Law. They can assist with financial matters such as restitution for out of pocket expenses such as property loss or damage or reparations for medical expenses, counseling or loss of wages due to the crime.
Victim/Witness staff will also make referrals for additional resources available to crime victims.
The Victim/Witness staff is committed to listening to victims’ stories with compassion, providing opportunities for victims to have a real voice in the prosecution process and helping preserve the dignity of victims as they go through the justice process.
As a Victim, you have the right:
To be Notified of:
- Crime victim rights.
- Content of plea agreements.
- Decision to not prosecute or dismiss domestic assault, harassment or criminal sexual conduct cases.
- Date and time of final disposition of the case and sentence modifications.
- Offender release from prison/institutions or transfer to a less secure facility.
- Possible HIV testing if defendant is convicted of a violent crime.
- Appeals and the right to attend if there are oral arguments.
- Motions to have case records expunged.
- Filing of a civil commitment petition and the outcome.
To Protection from Harm:
- Tampering with a witness is a crime in Minnesota.
- Call 911 if you are threatened or harassed by anyone and call the victim/witness advocate and/or the prosecuting attorney.
- Request law enforcement withhold public access to data about identity.
- Victims do not have to give their addresses in open court.
- Secured waiting areas during court.
- Victims/Witnesses cannot be disciplined or dismissed by your employer if called to testify in court.
To Participate in the Prosecution:
- Input for pre-trial diversion program decision.
- May request a speedy trial.
- Object to the plea agreement at the plea hearing.
- Attend the sentencing hearing and voice objections to plea agreements or the proposed disposition or sentence.
- Provide a victim impact statement.
- If restitution isn't paid, request a probation review hearing.
To Apply for Financial Assistance:
- Receive a witness fee for loss of wages, child care, meals and accommodations.
- Assistance from the state for economic loss due to violent crime.
- Request the court to order the defendant to pay restitution.