Victim Witness Bill of Rights

Most people know that the suspect of a crime has certain rights that are afforded to him by the criminal justice system.  Many people do not know that "Victims and Witnesses" of crimes now have rights, too.  In 1984, South Carolina passed into law the Victims' and Witnesses' Bill of Rights.  If you have been a victim of a crime, you have the following rights:

The right to:

  • Be treated with dignity and compassion.
  • Protection from intimidation and harm.
  • Be informed concerning the criminal justice process (bond hearings, preliminary hearing, trials, etc.)
  • Submit a Victim Impact Statement to the court.
  • Compensation (if eligible) and/or restitution.
  • Preservation of property and employment.
  • Due process in criminal court proceedings.
  • Special attention for certain witness (young, elderly and handicapped).
  • A copy of the incident report at no cost upon request.

The Florence Police Department's Victim's Assistance Office provides:

  • Short term crisis counseling for victims and witnesses; in the home, at the scene, at the hospital or in the office.
  • Information and referrals to other help agencies.
  • Crime to court assistance; case status information, support at line-ups, assistance with police procedures, notification of court appearances, court accompaniment, property release, etc.
  • Assistance in filing South Carolina Victim's compensation claims.  South Carolina offers financial assistance to individuals who have been victimized by violent crimes.  For those who are eligible, the State Office Of Victim Assistance will pay up to $4,000 towards funeral expenses, up to $15,000 for medical expenses, lost wages as a result of the crime and up to 20 visits or 180 days for mental health counseling.
  • Crime prevention tips and referrals.

FLORENCE POLICE DEPARTMENT'S VICTIM WITNESS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

The Florence Police Department's Victim Witness Assistance Program is dedicated to providing services to victims of crime to help them cope with the traumatic effects of the criminal justice system involvement.

The Victim Witness Assistance Office is located at the Florence Police Department, 324 West Evans Street, Florence, South Carolina.  The office provides services to any person who has been the victim or witness of a crime that has occurred in the City of Florence.  Staff and volunteers are on duty 24 hours a day to insure that the South Carolina Victim's Bill of Rights is enforced.

IF YOU NEED HELP, CALL OUR VICTIM WITNESS ASSISTANCE OFFICE AT
(843) 676-8800 OR (843) 665-3191

Important Numbers and Information Florence Police Department 24-hour
Non-Emergency 665-3191
Criminal Investigations Unit 676-8800
Victim's Advocate 676-8800
SC State Office of Victim Assistance 803-737-8140
SC Victim's Assistance Network 803-737-8122
City Judge's Office 665-3148
Family Court 665-3096
Florence County Magistrate's Office 665-0031
Department of Juvenile Justice 665-3080
Pee Dee Coalition 665-4694

If you have been the victim of a crime…   WE CAN HELP

IN ANY EMERGENCY SITUATION, (POLICE/FIRE/MEDICAL)  CALL 911

FLORENCE POLICE DEPARTMENT
324 West Evans Street
Florence, SC  29501-3456
Victim's Advocate Office #: (843) 676-8800
Fax #: (843) 679-5677