The Citrus County Sheriff's Office is dedicated to helping victims of crime.  It is our goal to ensure that crime victims are treated with respect and dignity.  With that aim in mind, Sheriff Jeffrey Dawsy created the Victim Resource Advocate Program.  An Advocate is there to help the victim move through the complex criminal justice system as easily as possible.  Some of the services the Advocate provides are:
  • Help victims get their property returned quickly
  • Help victims fill out Victim's Compensation Forms
  • Provide immediate crisis intervention
  • Refer victims to local service organizations that may be able to help with food, shelter and utility bills
  • Explain the legal process to victims
  • Talk to a victim's creditors and employers
  • Provide moral support and lend a sympathetic ear

You can reach a Victim Resource Advocate by calling 352-726-4488.  The services a Victim Advocate provides are free, so please call us!  We are here for you!

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Victim's Rights

As A Victim The Florida Constitution Guarantees Your Right To:

Victim Compensation
If you receive injuries, you may be eligible for Crime Victim Compensation to help with medical bills, lost wages, funeral expenses, and other losses. Your Victim Advocate will be glad to help you fill out the applications for your compensation.

Be Informed About Your Role In The Criminal Justice Process
Your role is critical.  You have seen, heard, or experienced something that is important to the investigation of this case.  You may be interviewed by law enforcement to identify the assailant, help locate the crime scene, identify stolen property, etc.  Please keep us informed of your current address and telephone number.

Be Present At All Crucial Stages Of Judicial Proceedings
You have the right to be present, informed, and when relevant, be heard at all crucial stages of the judicial proceedings.  You have the right to be informed about any changes to scheduled judicial proceedings that you are involved in.  You also have the right to receive information about proceedings related to the accused, and the right to a timely disposition of your case.

Submit A Victim Impact Statement
You have the right to submit an oral or written impact statement to the judge prior to the sentencing of the offender.  The impact statement gives you the opportunity to express your feelings about the crime, how it has affected your life, and your thoughts on sentencing.

Be Informed Of The Offender's Arrest Of Release From Incarceration
You have the right to be informed of the offender's arrest.  You also have the right to be informed of the offender's release or escape from incarceration.  The notification may come by mail or by phone.  If you wish any additional information, you may contact our office or the State Attorney's Office .

Restitution
You have the right to request restitution from the defendant.  The court may order that the offender pay for medical bills, psychological care, lost wages, property damage or loss and funeral or related expenses if death occurred because of the crime.  Keep track of your loss, because you might be required to provide documentation!

Return Of Property
Any of your property that has been held for evidence should be returned to you promptly.  However, remember that the property may be necessary for prosecution and will not be returned if there is a compelling reason to retain it.

Notification To Employers And Creditors
At your request, your Victim Advocate or the State Attorney's Office will inform your employer that your cooperation in their investigation and prosecution of the case may necessitate your absence from work.  At your request, we will also contact your creditors to seek their consideration if you are temporarily unable to continue payments as a result of the crime.

Presence Of A Victim Advocate
At your request, a Victim Advocate is permitted to attend and be present during any of your depositions.

Victim / Witness Personal Safety
You have the right to information on steps that are available to law enforcement and the State Attorney's Office to protect you from intimidation.  If someone is threatening you or trying to keep you from testifying, please contact our office immediately.

Assistance With Parking
You have the right to request assistance with parking, transportation or other needs that may arise as the result of your participation in the criminal justice process.

Public Records Exemption
You have the right to request, for specific crimes, that your home and work telephone numbers and addresses and personal assets not be disclosed to anyone.