Additional Rights

Rights of Victims of Crime

Victims of crime have the right to:
  • A separate or secure waiting area at all public court proceedings
  • Be informed of the use and purpose of a victim impact statement, complete a victim impact statement, and have the statement considered before sentencing and the acceptance of a plea bargain and before an inmate is released on parole
  • Be informed, when requested, by a peace officer about the defendant’s right to bail and criminal investigation procedures, and by the prosecutor’s office about general procedures in the criminal justice system, including plea agreements, restitution, appeals, and parole
  • Have their safety considered by the magistrate when setting bail
  • Have the prosecutor notify an employer, upon request, that the need for the victim’s testimony may involve the victim’s absence from work
  • Information about the Texas Crime Victims’ Compensation Fund, payment for a medical examination for a victim of sexual assault, and, on request, referral to social service agencies that provide additional assistance
  • Information, on request, about parole procedures, parole proceedings, and the inmate’s release
  • On request, the right to counseling and testing regarding AIDS and HIV infection and testing for victims of sexual assault
  • Participate in the parole process by submitting written information to the Board of Pardons and Paroles for inclusion in the defendant’s file for consideration by the board prior to parole
  • Prompt return of any property that is no longer needed as evidence
  • Provide pertinent information concerning the impact of the crime to the Probation Department prior to sentencing
  • Receive adequate protection from harm and threats of harm arising from cooperation with prosecution efforts
  • Receive information, on request, of relevant court proceedings, cancellations and rescheduling prior to the event, and appellate court decisions after the decisions are entered but before they are made public
  • Request victim-offender mediation coordinated by the Victim Services Division of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice