Is there anyone around you who has become a victim of theft, robbery or any other unlawful actions? Have you become the victim of crime? Do you know your rights and do you want to know more about the process of criminal proceedings? Do you need to be accompanied to the Police of the Czech Repuvlic or to the court? We are here to provide you with support even in the situation described by our colleague, probation officer from the Jeseník Service Centre:
A 55 year old female client has been robbed. The cottage in the garden of her house was left almost empty. A lawn mower, tools and wood saw – everything was stolen. The door lock and doors were damaged. At first glance, you could think about the crime as about the property damage but in fact the client suffered a huge mental blow. Her sense of security was disturbed and she was afraid that next time thieves could break into her house. After reporting to the Police she needed to get oriented in what her next steps as the crime victim are, what she can expect from the criminal proceedings and what she needs to get ready for. The Police of the Czech Republic provided her with the first information, yet, the she did not know what to do next, which rights apply to her. She needed to be accompanied to the police interrogation, she was not well-oriented and was afraid to handle everything just on her own. The Police recommended to contact the Victim´s Counselling Office.
She therefore contacted the Victim´s Counselling Office. The Victim´s Counsellor helped her draft a report on compensation for damage which is used during the criminal proceedings. She provided all documents regarding the damage and repairs she had paid for. It is important to provide all these documents, otherwise she would have to enforce her claim in further court proceedings. She also needed to be accompanied to the police interrogation as there was no one who could do that in the position of confidant and in general, everything that happened put a lot of stress on her. The Victim´s Counsellor accompanied her, provided her with mental support, she could talk with the Counsellor about what had happened and share how she had felt and what the crime had caused to her life. She could not sleep, eat and she avoided people she did not know. With the help of the Victim´s Counsellor she was able to draft the Victim Impact Statement which is a part of the court file. In her statement she described not only the property damages but even the mental damages she had suffered from. She exercised her rights in practice – applied for compensation for damage, was accopanied by the confidant, drafted the Victim Impact Statement and used the professional help of the Victim´s Counsellor.
Crime victims can contact the Probation and Mediation Service Centres operating in 74 towns across the Czech Republic on any working day. The aim of the European Day for Victims of Crime on 22 February is to raise awareness about the victim´s rights and needs.
Probation and Mediation Service traditionally commemorates this day as well. This year together with the Police of the Czech Republic we will honour the victims of crime with a minute of silence and lit beacons of police cars.