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FAU Police Department Badge  Victim Services

VICTIM SERVICES can be reached at (561) 297-0500

FAU Victim Services is intended to assist students, staff and faculty with the traumatizing consequences of being a victim of crime even if the crime occurred off campus.
Most people have little contact with the criminal justice system, therefore, it can be confusing, intimidating and frustrating to navigate alone . The Florida Atlantic University Police Department wants to provide the members of the FAU community, who are criminally victimized, with information and services to lessen the impact of victimization.
The services offered by the FAU PD Victim Advocate include:


•    Providing Crisis Intervention
•    Helping you evaluate your options
•    Giving you information regarding your rights according to the Florida State Statues
•    Helping document your victimization for school or employers
•    Helping you create a safety plan
•    Accompanying you to appointments at police departments, the State Attorney’s Office, Dean’s Office, court  and other places when necessary
•    Providing you with referrals to social services such as counseling, legal, and substance abuse providers
•    Providing you with information and assistance throughout your individual case
•    Explaining how the judicial process works
•    Assisting you in filling out and filing an injunction for protection (restraining order)
•    Explaining Crime Compensation and assisting you in filling out paperwork
•    Acting as your liaison to the Criminal Justice System

Crime victims frequently experience a myriad of feelings. The Victim Services program offers resources and referrals to assist victims in managing and understanding the emotions and physical reactions associated with being victimized.  Sometimes victims are reluctant to report crimes or are not sure whether what occurred is a crime. You can discuss you victimization with the advocate from victim services and decide if a crime truly occurred and if you’d like to report the incident to police. While making an official report is encourages, it is not required. YOU DO NOT NEED TO MAKE A POLICE REPORT TO SPEAK WITH AN ADVOCATE.

All services are free and confidential unless under legal mandate of a court (subpoena).  Florida State Statues does mandate some types of crime information to be reported to the appropriate authorities, such as child abuse, the abuse of a vulnerable adult, or knowledge of someone having suicidal or homicidal thoughts.

 

For more information on Victim Services click below.


Victim's Rights
Victim Compensation
Confidentiality Policy
Mandatory Reporting
Crimes Off Campus
Types of Victimization
When to Call Victim Services
How to Help
Be Prepared
What If I Want to Remain Anonymous?
Federal Sex Crimes Prevention

 

Victim's Rights

Florida State Statute 960 outlines the rights of all crime victims.  Brief synopses of those rights are:

1)    Be informed about the availability of Crime Victim Compensation.
2)    Information regarding local victim assistance programs.
3)    Information regarding the role of the victim in the criminal and juvenile justice systems and the stages of this process.
4)    Be informed, present and heard at all crucial stages of the criminal and juvenile justice proceedings. (Incarcerated victims have the right to submit written statements.)
5)    A prompt and timely disposition of the case in so far as it does not interfere with the constitutional rights of the accused.
6)    Be protected from intimidation.
7)    Be notified of scheduling changes.
8)    Be notified in advance, if possible, of the judicial proceedings relating to the arrest, release and community control of the accused and the proceedings in the prosecution.
9)    Be consulted by the State Attorney’s office in felony cases with physical or emotional injury or trauma, cases in which the victim is a minor, and cases involving a homicide; regarding the release of the accused, pending judicial proceedings, plea agreements, participation in pretrial diversion programs, and sentencing of the accused. Information concerning the prompt return of property.
11)  Assistance in notifying your employer or creditor of your victimization.
12)  Request restitution.
13)  Submit an oral or written victim impact statement to the court.
14)  General victim assistance such as translators, separate waiting rooms, etc.
15)  Be notified of the escape of the accused.
16)  Have an advocate present at depositions.
17)  Review pre-sentence investigation reports.
18)  Standing, that is the right to assert your rights as a victim.
19)  Request the courtroom be cleared, with certain exceptions, during your testimony of a sexual offense.
20)  Information concerning the address confidentiality program for domestic violence victims.
21)  Request HIV testing.
22)  Not be excluded from any portion of the proceeding solely due to being subpoenaed to testify.
23)  Not be required to attend discovery depositions at any correctional facility.
24)  To be informed of confidential communications.
25)  To request, for specific crimes, that your name not be disclosed to the public.
26)  A minor student victim attending school has the right to request that a juvenile offender attending the same school be required to attend a different school from the minor victim or the victim’s sibling or siblings.

To conform to Florida Statute and to assist victims, the Florida Atlantic University Police Department has prepared a Victim/Witness brochure which is given to crime victims as required by law.

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Victim Compensation

If you report your victimization to the police, you may be eligible for victim’s compensation, which can help with medical, mental health, wage loss, funeral and other expenses.  Use this link to open the Florida Attorney General’s Victim Compensation Brochure in Adobe format.  The brochure is available in English, Spanish and Creole. Use this link to open the Florida Attorney General’s Victim Compensation Application in Adobe Format.  The form is available in English, Spanish and Creole.

The FAU victim advocate can explain the victim compensation program and help you complete these forms.  Call 561.297.0500.

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Confidentiality Policy

FAU Victim Services maintains confidentiality with all clients who utilize the program’s services. Client names, identifying information and disclosures will be kept completely confidential unless an advocate receives written permission from the client to release information to a third party, with the following exceptions:
•    A judge orders the program (advocate) release the information to the court
•    An advocate receives knowledge of a client’s suicidal or homicidal thoughts
•    An advocate receives knowledge that child or elder abuse has occurred

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Mandatory Reporting

Mandatory Reporting of child abuse or the abuse of a vulnerable adult is required by Florida State Statute.
If you have knowledge or suspect that child abuse, elder abuse, or abuse of a vulnerable adult is occurring, call the Florida Abuse Hotline at 1 800 96 ABUSE.

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Crimes Off Campus

Because becoming a crime victim can affect a student’s ability to learn and an employee’s ability to work, victim services are provided for students, faculty and staff who become victims of crime regardless of where the crime occurred.  If you are in danger, call 911. However, if you become a victim and are unsure whether to report, what happens when you report or even to whom to report, Victim Services can assist you with these issues by explaining what happens when a crime is reported, determining agency jurisdiction and accompanying you when you do report.
Victim services are for available for all campuses. YOU DO NOT NEED TO MAKE A POLICE REPORT TO TALK WITH AN ADVOCATE. While making an official report is encouraged, it is not required. Victim Services are available even if the crime is not reported.

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Types of Victimization

If you choose to report to the police, a victim advocate is available to accompany you to the correct law enforcement agency, regardless of where the crime occurred.

Sexual Violence

Can be any forced, coerced or unwanted sexual activity that may occur between friends, dates, family members, acquaintances, study partners or strangers.   This includes Rape, Date Rape, Acquaintance Rape, Sexual Assault, Attempted Sexual Assault and other sex crimes. If you do not know whether a crime has occurred, contact the victim advocate to discuss the situation, even if you choose not to report to the police you might need referral to campus or area service agencies. Because of Florida Mandatory Reporting laws, the victim advocate is required to report sex crimes against children.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual Harassment is sexual conduct or behavior that creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working or educational environment.  Reports of sexual harassment are required to be reported to the department of Equal Opportunity Programs  by all FAU employees.  If you wish information, you may contact EEO at 561-297-3004 or call the victim advocate.  General questions and anonymous questions can be answered by the victim advocate but FAU policy requires the advocate to inform EEO about any complaints with named individuals.  If you choose to report to EEO, the advocate can accompany you and provide support and assistance during the process.

Sexual Nuisances such as indecent exposure, obscene phone calls and/or voyeurism can be frightening.  If you choose to contact the advocate, you will be given information concerning safety planning, reactions to victimization and options for response.

Dating/Relationship/Domestic Violence

Dating, relationship, and domestic Abuse (physical, emotional, verbal, financial or sexual) in any form can be devastating to the victim. The abuser can be a family member, intimate partner, boy/girl friend or even a close friend.  Research indicates that abuse escalates and that it is highly unlikely that the abuse will end on its own accord.    There are many reasons that a victim may stay with an abuser and statistics illustrate that the most dangerous time in an abusive relationship is when the victim attempts to leave.  An advocate can assist you with safety planning, injunctions, and shelter information as well as providing you with support to leave and checking your eligibility for domestic violence relocation funding from the State of Florida.

Stalking and Cyberstalking

Stalking is the willful, malicious and repeated following or harassing of another person can be considered stalking.  This may include telephone calls, letters, sending flowers, emails, instant messages, posting messages on Myspace, Facebook, twitter, pinterest or other electronic bulletin boards and other acts that serve no useful purpose. Stalking can be by a person known or unknown to you. An advocate can assist you with internet safety, safety planning, injunctions and reporting options.

Assault and Battery

Assault and battery is a disagreement that can result in assault, battery or threats.  Violence can occur without provocation, without warning and in the most mundane of circumstances.  An assault and/or battery can be a touch, slap, punch with or without a weapon.  A threat can be considered an assault.  Being the victim of any unwanted touching, threats or violence can be traumatic.  If you are in danger, call 911.  If you choose to delay reporting or want information about reporting, you can contact an advocate for more information about your rights.

Hate Crimes

Any crime committed based upon a person’s ethnicity, sexual orientation, spiritual beliefs and/ or gender can be considered a hate crime.  Victimization based on the very basis of who you are is frightening and can affect your world view.  If you are in danger, call 911.  If you choose to delay report or want information about reporting, you can contact an advocate for more information about your rights.

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When to Call Victim Services

Call Victim Services at (561) 297-0500 if:
•    If you think you have been victimized and are unsure whether a crime has been committed
•    You want to know what happens when a crime is reported to police
•    You want someone to accompany you in reporting the crime to the police
•    You want information about media and victim identification
•    You need information about the judicial process
•    You want to know how to stay safe
•    You have any questions about community resources, referrals
•    You have any questions or need assistance with filing an injunction

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How to Help

Understand that this experience can be life changing for the victim. All you can do is listen and be supportive of what they are feeling. These crimes take control away from the victim. Be sure to ask them what they want you to do with this information. 

DO listen carefully and spend time with the victim, lend support and try to remain free from judgment.
DO tell them that “It’s not your fault.” Keep repeating as much as necessary.
DO reach out. This may help alleviate feelings of isolation.
DO reassure the victim that he/she is safe. Do whatever you can to increase physical safety.
DO give them space and privacy if they want it, but follow their cues.
DO encourage them to speak to the victim advocate about their options, if they are unsure about what they want to do.
DO encourage the victim to get help and avoid giving your own advice as to what the victim should do.
DO NOT pry. Let them talk and try not to ask too many questions or talk about your personal experiences.
DO NOT ever tell a victim to get over it. Victims never get over what happened to them, but they can learn to accommodate or accept it.
DO NOT take anger or other feelings personally. Validate the victim’s feelings.
DO NOT try to push the victim to report the crime.
DO NOT try to “fix” anything. Simply listen and let the victim know that you care. This will help a great deal.

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Be Prepared

Anyone can be the victim of a sexual assault.  Over 70% of sexual assaults involve the consumption of alcohol by the victim and/or suspect.  Be alert at all times and trust your instincts. Surprise and fear are two weapons a suspect relies on most. Being aware of your surroundings will help you minimize these advantages.  Regarding “acquaintance” or “date” rape, know your own sexual values, expectations, wishes and intentions and communicate them clearly and openly.  In reference to rape drugs, never leave your drink unattended or accept a drink that you did not witness being made. If you think you were sexually assaulted and wish to report it to police, you should not shower, bathe, douche, change clothes or clean up the area where the assault occurred. These actions could destroy evidence. Take advantage of the Rape Aggression Defense classes taught for free on campus.

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What if I want to remain anonymous?

If you wish to remain anonymous, you may contact victim services by email at victimservices@fau.edu or call (561) 297-0500.

If you wish to remain anonymous, the advocate will not ask for any identifying information.  Any reports of crime that could affect the safety and security of the University can still be reported anonymously but a timely warning may be issued to community to ensure its safety.  Even though you choose to remain anonymous, you can still receive crisis intervention, ideas for safety planning, and referrals to social services.  Florida State Statute 794.024 requires that the name, address or other identifiers of victims reporting a sexual battery not to be released to the public.
Victim Compensation is not available unless a report is made and the victim is cooperative.

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Federal Sex Crimes Prevention

Sexual Offender/Predator Registration in Florida

The Federal Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act requires colleges and universities to issue a statement advising the campus community where state law enforcement agency information concerning registered sex offender may be obtained. The act also requires registered sex offenders/predators to provide to appropriate state officials notice of each institution of higher education in that state at which the offender/predator is employed, carries on a vocation, or is a student.

Any member of the Florida Atlantic University community who wishes to obtain further information regarding sexual offender/predators in our area may refer to the FDLE website at:  FDLE Florida Sexual Offenders and Predators or call 1-888-FL-PREDATOR / 1-888-357-7332). The FDLE searchable database may be used to find all registered sex offenders in any city, county, or zip code in the state. In accordance with Florida State Statute 775.21 ("The Florida Sexual Predators Act") convicted sex offenders in Florida must register with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement ("the FDLE") within 48 hours of establishing permanent or temporary residence. It is then the responsibility of the agency to make required notification to all community members of the presence of predators (only) in any manner deemed appropriate by the agency.

Upon notification of the presence of an offender/predator, it is the responsibility of the law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over the offender/predator's address to inform the Florida Atlantic University Police Department that the offender/predator has stated that he/she is currently enrolled at, living on campus, or employed by the university. The FAUPD can then make all prudent notifications to members of the campus community.

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 Last Modified 7/14/14