Inside LADA

April 28, 2015: LADA Celebrates National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

 National Crime Victims Rights Week 2015

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office (LADA recognized National Crime Victims’ Rights Week by calling attention to the needs of crime victims and working to develop better ways to serve them. This year, the theme of the national celebration was “Engaging Communities. Empowering Victims.”

The District Attorney’s Office has been a national leader in victim services. The office created its Victim-Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) in 1977 to support crime victims and their families. Its motto is “Helping Victims Become Survivors.” Learn more about VWAP

On April 23, LADA held its Seventh Annual Victims’ Rights Symposium. Community safety, hate crimes and the current state of the law and victims’ rights were discussed. Roughly 300 people attended the event in Alhambra.

As part of National Crime Victims Rights’ Week, several individuals and organizations were honored by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and LADA for their support of crime victims.

Among those recognized by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors was Deputy District Attorney Sharon Ransom, who works for LADA’s Victim Impact Program in the Van Nuys Branch Office.

Ransom was lauded by District Attorney Jackie Lacey for her work with victims of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse.

LADA’s Restitution Enhancement Program, which is led by Deputy-in-Charge Lydia Bodin and Supervising Paralegal Tracy Anderson, also was honored.

The Restitution Enhancement Program assists victims with their constitutional right to restitution.

“Between 2008 and 2014, the Restitution Enhancement Program obtained restitution orders totaling more than $160 million,” District Attorney Lacey said.

Others recognized by the Board of Supervisors include the Children’s Advocacy Center and the Los Angeles County Human Rights Commission Network Against Hate Crime.

Those being recognized by LADA include the Long Beach Human Trafficking Task Force, the YWCA of Greater Los Angeles, the Violence Prevention Coalition of Greater Los Angeles, the Cal Poly Pomona Violence Prevention and Women’s Resource Center, the Mary Magdalene Project and retired sheriff’s Detective Thomas “Bo” Dobis.

JoAnn Apewajoye, one of LADA’s victim services representative, received the Mia Baker Victim Advocacy Award. The award is named after the late VWAP director who was a pioneer in victim services and helped create the program.