This report describes research on victim and professional perspectives on the delivery of victim notification procedures, implementation of new victim notification processes, victim engagement within the criminal justice system, and recommendations for improvements.
Victims and professionals made five recommendations.
- Law enforcement should not assume that a victim does or does not want to be notified.
- All victims should be given the opportunity to be notified, and the decision for notification should be a choice provided to all victims instead of something imposed on them by someone else.
- Mechanisms for notification should be flexible and thoughtful and incorporate choices for victims.
- Victims should have a choice in whether their case moves forward based on DNA testing.
- Resources and support are imperative to the notification process.
Additional reports from this research project can be found at: www.houstonsakresearch.org.