Crime Victim Advocacy

victim information and notification everyday logoVINE allows crime victims to be informed and involved in important matters related to their cases. Access to the automated system is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1-800-770-0192. Victims who register will be contacted by VINE when there is a change in the status of their case or offender.

Here’s How VINE Works

This free service is sponsored by the Ohio Attorney General’s Office, the Buckeye State Sheriff’s Association, the Ohio Prosecuting Attorneys Association, the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, and the Ohio Department of Youth Services.

Marsy’s Law   

Marsy’s Law, which provides basic constitutional rights to crime victims, took effect on February 5th, 2018.

On November 7, 2017, an overwhelming majority of Ohio voters passed Marsy’s Law in a record-breaking 83% show of support. Marsy’s Law grants Ohio’s crime victims specific rights in the criminal justice process. Many of these rights already exist in Ohio statutes and evidence rules. However, Ohio’s voters have made a clear statement that they want to ensure that Ohio’s victims’ rights are protected and enforced. In addition, in passing Marsy’s Law, Ohio voters have prioritized victims’ rights and the idea that these rights should be enforced no less vigorously than the rights of the accused. Consideration of victim dignity, privacy, and safety must be elevated in the criminal justice process. In addition, remedies are now explicitly available should victims’ rights be violated.

One major change is that Marsy’s Law clarifies that crime victims have standing to enforce their rights via motions and appellate review. Specifically, it states: “The victim, the attorney for the government upon request of the victim, or the victim’s other lawful representative, in any proceeding involving the criminal offense or delinquent act against the victim or in which the victim’s rights are implicated, may assert the rights enumerated in the constitution or any other right afforded to the victim by law.”

Marsy’s Law reinforces the ability for victims to file motions to protect and enforce their rights. It does not give victims the ability to control the criminal case or appeal acquittals. Marsy’s Law does not allow victims to sue criminal justice officials for rights violations.

Listed below is the link to the Victims’ Rights Toolkit, a great online resource providing victims with information and tools to protect and enforce their rights.