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Victim Assistance Program, Fort Wayne Police Department

Crime Victims’ Rights Award
Watch the tribute video

Victim Assistance Program, Fort Wayne Police Department | Crime Victims’ Rights Award
Fort Wayne, Indiana

The Victim Assistance Program, established within the Fort Wayne Police Department in 1981, provides comprehensive services to victims of all types of crime in the city and surrounding communities of Allen County. Advocates and volunteers provide information, crisis intervention, case management, and advocacy to crime victims as they navigate the criminal justice system. 

On-call 24/7, the Department’s Victim Assistance Program also collaborates with various community and state agencies to provide trainings, outreach events, and projects to address the emotional, physical, financial, social, spiritual, and cultural needs of crime victims, while also bringing awareness about the impact crime has on victims and the importance of victims’ rights. 

In hopes of reaching more victims with their services, the department’s Victim Assistance Program hosts several events throughout the year, such as Rise Up Against Domestic Violence during National Domestic Violence Awareness month; a candlelight vigil in April to remember and honor homicide victims; Santa’s Workshop, which provides Christmas toys to families of crime victims; a Diamonds & Denim auction event to emphasize that “every victim matters;” and a Book Bag Giveaway in August for school-aged children. Additionally, the department assisted Fort Wayne United to launch a Meals 4 Healing program with local churches to provide meals for families of homicide victims. 

In 2018, the Victim Assistance Program assisted 7,300 primary crime victims with their criminal cases and helped meet their other needs. Through the Victim Assistance Program’s efforts locally, under the leadership of Director Jessica Crozier, crime victims receive information regarding their rights, and their involvement in (and support throughout) the justice process as more than just a witness. They also learn about compensation programs and services that can help them cope with the aftermath of crime. 

The Victim Assistance Program’s wraparound assistance—and referrals to community services and counseling—is making a significant difference for victims and encouraging them that there is hope. The longevity of Fort Wayne’s program, and the sustained dedication of the department’s leadership and staff over nearly 40 years, is certainly to be commended.

2020 National Crime Victims' Service Awards Tribute Video

Watch this tribute video about the Victim Assistance Program, Fort Wayne Police Department, 2020 recipient of the Crime Victims’ Rights Award.