VICTIMS’ RIGHTS / VICTIM RIGHTS - CONNECTICUT

The material provided on the 211 eLibrary is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be construed as legal advice.

WHAT ARE CRIME VICTIMS’ RIGHTS IN CONNECTICUT?

In 1996, a victims’ rights amendment was approved by referendum and became Article 29 of the Connecticut state constitution. This amendment gives victims of crime in Connecticut the right to:

  • be treated with fairness and respect and be protected from the accused throughout the criminal justice process;
  • notification of court proceedings and information about the arrest, conviction, sentence, imprisonment, and release of the accused;
  • communicate with prosecutors and attend all criminal proceedings, including the trial, unless the court determines that their impending trial testimony would be materially affected if they heard other testimony;
  • object to or support any plea agreement entered into by the accused and the prosecution, make a statement to the court before it accepts any plea agreement, and make a statement to the court at sentencing;
  • timely disposition of the criminal case following arrest, provided the accused’s rights are not abridged; and
  • restitution, enforceable in the same manner as any other cause of action or as otherwise provided by law.

Under this amendment, the Connecticut General Assembly can define "victim", and has the responsibility to pass laws that enforce this amendment. In 2008, new legislation extended victim's rights by:

  • allowing family members of a victim to testify at parole hearings;
  • requiring the Judicial Branch to notify victims when the court is considering a plea bargain
  • mandating the Judicial Branch to post arrest warrant information online (similar to the way information is currently posted on sex offenders)

Victims in Connecticut have rights under state and federal law. Different organizations are responsible for certain rights. These include Municipal and State Police, Ofice of Victim Services, Office of the State Attorney, Department of Collections, Board of Pardons and Paroles, and Court Support Services Divisions.

In addition, some cities, towns, and social service agencies provide some services to crime victims, depending on where the crime occurred or the type of crime committed.

FOR MORE DETAILED INFORMATION ON VICTIM SERVICES:

See the 211 Information Library topic: VICTIM SERVICES - CONNECTICUT

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SOURCE: Connecticut General Assembly, Office of Legislative Research Report # 2000-R-1065 and 2008-R-0069
PREPARED BY: 211/kq
CONTENT LAST REVIEWED: April2013

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