Victims of Crime
Victims of crime have rights in the justice system. They must be treated with dignity and respect. Their needs must be considered in every step of a case.
If you are the victim of a crime you have certain rights. These include the right to information about the investigation or court case. You also have the right to have your safety taken into account. If the case goes to court you have the right to tell the court how the crime has affected you.
There are laws to help victims stay safe. For example, there are laws that make it a crime to harass, intimidate or threaten a person. These laws also protect a witness or victim. As well, a peace bond can be ordered, prohibiting a specific person from being around a victim.
The police can help people who have been the victim of a crime. They can investigate the crime. Then they can decide if there is enough evidence to arrest or charge someone with the crime.
If someone is charged with a crime there will usually be a court case. The person accused of the crime will usually need to appear in court many times. They will appear in court to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty, for a trial if they plead not guilty, and for sentencing.
As a victim you may have suffered losses and expenses. Your property may have been stolen or damaged. You may have expenses, such as dental bills, because of the harm done to you. Victims may be compensated for some losses.
If someone is convicted of a crime, the judge must decide on a sentence. There are usually a wide range of sentences the judge can choose from. These include fines, supervision in the community and jail time.