The Victim/Witness Assistance Unit provides advocacy and information about the court process to victims and witnesses of crime, as well as information about victim rights and referrals to community resources, in accordance with the Massachusetts Victim Bill of Rights (Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 258B). Services also are provided to family members of child victims and to survivors of homicide victims.
Victim/Witness Advocates assist victims to access their rights under the law. Advocates provide support to victims of violent crimes and assist victims of domestic violence in filing for abuse prevention orders (restraining orders) and harassment prevention orders. Victim/Witness Services Brochure.
Victim/Witness Advocates are available in courtrooms located in each of the district, juvenile and superior courts in the Northwestern District. Specialized advocates are assigned to work with the Child Abuse Unit, the Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Unit, and the Elders and Persons with Disabilities Unit. Victim/Witness Advocates provide assistance with the following services:
- Notification and information about court proceedings and case status;
- Safety planning;
- Accompaniment to court proceedings;
- Information for filing restitution and victim compensation claims for crime-related expenses;
- Victim Impact Statements to the court;
- Notification of an inmate’s status or release from custody; and
- Property return;
Victim/Witness Assistance Unit phone numbers
- Northampton - (413) 586-5780
- Greenfield - (413) 772-6944
- Belchertown - (413) 323-5275
- Orange - (978) 544-7376
For further information on victim rights and locating victim services and resources statewide, contact the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance.
For more information and forms, please download any of the following publications
- NWDA Victim/Witness Services
- Victim Impact Statement
- In the Aftermath of Crime: A Guide to Victim Rights and Services in Massachusetts
- Suggestions for Witnesses
- Restitution Information form