Victims of Crime Representation
At Defenders of Children, we represent children who are victims of crime (as well as their families) throughout the criminal justice process to help ensure that their constitutional rights as victims are respected.
Article 2, Section 2.1 of the Arizona State Constitution
is known as the “Victims’ Bill of Rights.”
Under the Victims’ Bill of Rights, victims of crime are promised certain rights, including the right to be kept informed and to have their voice heard throughout the criminal justice process as well as the right to compensation.
If the victim is a child or another person who cannot represent themselves (either because they lack legal capacity or are no longer living), the rights guaranteed by the Victims’ Bill of Rights apply to the victim’s parent(s) or spouse or other lawful representative.
Under the Victims’ Bill of Rights, crime victims in Arizona have each of the following rights:
1. To be treated with fairness, respect, and dignity, and to be free from intimidation, harassment, or abuse, throughout the criminal justice process.
2. To be informed, upon request, when the accused or convicted person is released from custody or has escaped.
3. To be present at and, upon request, to be informed of all criminal proceedings where the defendant has the right to be present.
4. To be heard at any proceeding involving a post-arrest release decision, a negotiated plea, and sentencing.
5. To refuse an interview, deposition, or other discovery request by the defendant, the defendant’s attorney, or other person acting on behalf of the defendant.
6. To confer with the prosecution, after the crime against the victim has been charged, before trial or before any disposition of the case and to be informed of the disposition.
7. To read pre-sentence reports relating to the crime against the victim when they are available to the defendant.
8. To receive prompt restitution from the person or persons convicted of the criminal conduct that caused the victim’s loss or injury.
9. To be heard at any proceeding when any post-conviction release from confinement is being considered.
10. To a speedy trial or disposition and prompt and final conclusion of the case after the conviction and sentence.
11. To have all rules governing criminal procedure and the admissibility of evidence in all criminal proceedings protect victims’ rights and to have these rules be subject to amendment or repeal by the legislature to ensure the protection of these rights.
12. To be informed of victims’ constitutional rights.