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Victim Impact Statements

Victims of crime have the right to make a victim impact statement, which is an opportunity for the victims to inform the court how the crime has affected them and their families. The statement not only provides the victim an opportunity to express their feelings, but it also gives the court essential information about the case. The statement can be presented either verbally or in written form to the court at the sentencing hearing. A written victim impact statement should be given to the victim assistant prior to the sentencing hearing.

How to Give a Verbal Statement

If a victim chooses to speak at the sentencing hearing, the following should be considered:

Emotional Impact – The affect of the crime on relationships, family members, friends, co-workers, and others.

Physical Impact – Describe physical injuries or symptoms suffered as a result of the crime.

Financial Impact – The affect of the crime on employment, education, and other daily activites previously performed. Report any out-of-pocket expenses for medical or dental bills and any property loss or damages due to the crime.

How to Write a Statement

When completing the form, considering the following tips:

  • Prepare early to avoid the stress of last minute writing.
  • Limit written statement to 2-4 pages.
  • Share specific feelings or recommendations for the sentence if desired.
  • Contact the Victim Assistance Program for help with preparing the victim impact statement.

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