Q. How long is each appointment?
Q. Do you provide an outreach service?
Q. How long will I be able to see the ISVA for?
Q. What is criminal injuries compensation?
Q. I haven’t reported the crime to the police yet, will you help me?
Q. I’m scared that no one will believe me.
Q. How will I know what has happened to my attacker?
Q. Will my attack appear in the newspaper?
Q. How long will it be before I go to court?
Q. Will I have to give evidence?
Q. Who will see me?
Q. Will I be able to speak to my barrister?
Q. How long will the trial go on for?
QHow long is each appointment?
AOn average, an hour is set aside for each appointment, although on some occasions we recognise that you may require more time and this is accommodated.
QDo you provide an outreach service?
AYes, if you are unable to travel to Twelves Company due to illness, disabilities or age, we will visit you at home (or a mutually convenient location). You will initially be offered three appointments after which, your needs will be reviewed again.
QHow long will I be able to see the ISVA for?
AYour ISVA will support you throughout the entire criminal justice process, from reporting the crime to your trial and will even help you with a criminal injuries compensation application after the trial (if applicable). It is difficult to gauge how long any investigation will be but you can be assured of the ISVA’s support for as long as it takes.
QWhat is criminal injuries compensation?
AThe Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is a government body that awards compensation to victims of crime. You must have reported the crime to the police but a conviction is not always necessary. Some clients are awarded compensation even if no further action is taken with the case. Your ISVA will help you with an application to the CICA but will advise you to seek legal advice if you need to appeal a CICA decision. There are many tariffs for compensation so it is difficult to estimate how much money you will receive.
QI haven’t reported the crime to the police yet, will you help me?
A The ISVA will discuss the process of reporting an incident to the police and answer any questions that will help you to reach a decision. If you decide to report to the police, your ISVA will contact a specially trained officer and arrange a meeting at a time and date convenient to you. The ISVA can accompany you to any interviews or appointments as necessary.
QI’m scared that no one will believe me.
AAlmost all victims of sexual crimes fear this very same thing. Please be assured that the ISVA will believe everything you say and will never judge you or condemn you.
There have been many rumours about the Police and their attitudes towards victims of sexual assaults. At Twelves Company, we have a very good relationship with the police and have direct access to a specialist unit with officers that have been highly trained to support victims of sexual crimes. It is the police’s job to investigate a crime – not judge you - and it is our job to make sure that you are treated with dignity and respect whilst in our care.
QHow will I know what has happened to my attacker?
AYou will be regularly updated by your ISVA or Sexual Offences Liaison Officer (SOLO) on all aspects of your case including the whereabouts and actions taken against your perpetrator.
If they are released on bail, you will be appropriately notified. Likewise, if they are remanded in custody, you will be informed of any forthcoming court appearances.
QWill my attack appear in the newspaper?
ANot without your involvement. Sometimes the police have a duty to protect the public, especially in situations where they believe a dangerous person is at large. Equally, there may also be witnesses that can strengthen your case and sometimes the media can help track them down. You will never be identified as this would be a breach of your human rights. You should be informed and consulted before any press release is made.
QHow long will it be before I go to court?
AIt is likely to take some time before you are given a trial date. Sometimes it can even take 12-18 months. It is important, leading up to the trial, that you access the support of the ISVA as they will ensure you are updated regularly and will even arrange a pre-court visit to familiarise you with the court process and surroundings.
QWill I have to give evidence?
AVictims of sexual offences are granted ‘special measures’ to assist them with giving evidence in court. These can range from special screens that prevent the witness from seeing the defendant; video recorded evidence recorded before the trial and live TV links – allowing a witness to give evidence from outside the court.
AAs part of the ‘special measures’ the judge can also order that the Public gallery of the court is cleared – so that evidence can be given in private. In this instance, only the defence and prosecution barristers, police officers, court staff and jury members will be present.
QWill I be able to speak to my barrister?
AThis is often difficult to arrange. It is an area that we are trying to improve; however the current situation often means that a client is unable to speak to the barrister until the day before, or even the morning of the trial.
QHow long will the trial go on for?
AAgain this is very difficult to answer. Depending on the complexity of the case it can be anything from one morning, to a week, to a month. Often, legal arguments can delay the start of some cases and in these circumstances your ISVA or SOLO will keep you updated. There are rooms within the court that you and your family will be able to use (away from any of the defendant’s representatives); where you will be able to rest and have refreshments.