Crime Victim Services
Crime can impact anyone, anywhere- families and children are particularly vulnerable. The League City Police Department recognizes the effects of crime are far-reaching and continue on after an arrest or court judgment. The results of violent crime are often physically and emotionally damaging, as well as, financially destructive. We are committed to helping crime victims navigate the criminal justice system and rebuild their lives by providing a licensed social worker to educate survivors of crime about their rights and inform them of additional services that may be available.
About the Victim Advocate Program
Our Crime Victims Advocate, Stephanie Rodriguez, has served with our Department since February 2012. Our primary goal is to alleviate the psychological and emotional trauma incurred as a result of violent crime. Addressing these needs will, in turn, increase victim and witness well-being and willingness to cooperate with law enforcement in the investigation and prosecution of crimes. The Victim Advocate Program provides on call support to victims of violent crime. Specialized assistance is available at the crime scene and throughout the investigative phase and criminal justice process, including the following:
- On-scene Crisis Intervention
- Emotional support to survivors and victim’s family members
- Referrals to support groups, shelter and housing facilities, agencies that provide medical and mental health services, and financial support
- Assistance with filing for Crime Victims’ Compensation
- Education on the criminal justice system, including obtaining protective orders and court procedures
- Assistance with filing a Victim Impact Statement
- Assistance in recovery of property
- Personal safety planning
Often a Protective Order and Restraining Order are use interchangeably but they are significantly different. A Protective Order is issued to prevent family violence from occurring and the violation of the Protective Order IS enforceable by police by arrest. A restraining order is a set of orders the court imposes to regulate conduct, typically in a divorce, preventing the parties from emptying the bank account, incurring new debt, from confiscating mail, or from speaking badly of the other party in front of the children. The Restraining Order is not enforceable by police.
Speaking with the Media
The choice to speak with the news media or release a statement is completely up to you. The following is a list of considerations when deciding to grant or deny a request from the news media:
- It is important to understand that whether you grant an interview or not, your story may still be printed and commented on. If you decide to grant an interview, you can request conditions.
- Remember that everything you say in the presence of a journalist is subject to being included in a media report.
- Agreeing to one interview does not mean you have to agree to follow up interviews of interviews with other journalists. You may also end an interview at anytime.
- You can appoint a spokesperson you trust to speak on your behalf if you do not want direct contact with the media. The role of spokesperson is to represent you and your family in a positive way, seek to protect your privacy and dignity, release written statements at your request and accompany you to interviews if you decide to speak to the media. You may consider leaving a message on your voicemail with the spokesperson’s contact information for all media inquiries.
- You may choose to release a written statement instead of an interview.
- You may refrain from answering any questions with which you are uncomfortable or that you feel are inappropriate.
- If a report contains inaccurate information, you can contact the journalist and seek a correction.
If you agree to an interview, here are some considerations:
- Time and location of the interview
- Information about the angle of the story
- List of interview questions in advance
- Non-disclosure of interview location and protection of your identity
- Other family members to be interviewed or shielded from the spotlight
- Request a specific reporter to conduct the interview
- Requests for omission of offensive photos or images from the broadcast or publication
- You may request a signed agreement of terms.
Your requests are negotiable. If the news media representative is unwilling or unable to agree to your terms, you can withdraw from the interview.