Loveland Bike Trail
 

Victim/Witness Safety

If you are in immediate danger, please call 911.

If you are threatened or intimidated because you are a victim or witness in a case, call the police or Sheriff's Department immediately and inform the District Attorney's Office as soon as possible. If you fear retaliation because you are a victim or witness in a case, inform the District Attorney's Office as soon as possible. Victim/witness specialists can be reached at (970) 498-7285 and can provide you with information and/or resources regarding your safety related to the criminal justice process.

Safety Planning for Victims

Mandatory Protection Order

The testimony of victims and witnesses is essential to an effective justice process. For that reason, it is critical that victims and witnesses are protected. In criminal cases, a mandatory protection order will be issued by the court at the defendant's first appearance (Colorado Revised Statues Section 18-1-1001). This mandatory protection order restrains a person from harassing, molesting, intimidating, retaliating against, or tampering with any witness or victim of a crime. The order remains in effect until the final disposition of the case, completion of sentence or acquittal.

No Contact Order

A no contact order is a condition that may be included on a standard protection order in cases involving domestic violence and certain cases involving crimes against persons, such as sexual assault, physical assault, child abuse (including physical and sexual abuse) and crimes against at-risk-adults. The defendant may be required to comply with provision such as:

  • No direct or indirect contact with the victim;
  • To stay away from victim's home or any other location where the victim or witness is likely to be found;
  • Shall vacate the residence;
  • Will not possess firearms or other weapons;
  • Will not possess or consume alcohol or controlled substances; and
  • Any other order the court thinks is appropriate to protect the safety of the victim.

If you have questions regarding the no contact order, or whether there is a no contact order in your case, you can contact the Victim/Witness Division at (970) 498-7285 or the victim/witness specialist assigned to the case.

Civil Protection Order

A civil protection order, commonly referred to as a restraining order, may be requested from the court in a separate civil action. View instructions from the Colorado Courts on filing for a civil protection order.

The Eighth Judicial District Self Help Center located in the Larimer County Justice Center is available to assist self-represented parties involved in legal proceedings. Learn more about the Eighth Judicial Self Help Center, and how the center may be able to help you.

Victim Notification

While the District Attorney's Office automatically notifies victims of critical stages, other agencies require the victim to request, or opt-in for notification. Notifications made by other agencies may include: current location, transfers, escapes, death of an offender while in custody, parole hearings and release dates. The agency responsible for offender notification is based on the sentence the offender receives. The District Attorney's Office will inform you of the appropriate agency to contact to receive post-conviction notifications. If a defendant is in the custody or control of one of the following agencies and you wish to be notified please remember, you must enroll with the agency directly:

State of Colorado Victim/Witness Protection Program

Although they occur rarely, acts of intimidation and/or threats against witnesses of crime are taken very seriously by the Eighth Judicial District Attorney's Office, and by the State of Colorado. In 1995, The Colorado General Assembly created a program for the purpose of facilitating protective measures for victims and witnesses involved in the investigation and prosecution of criminal cases. In 2006, the program was named the Javad Marshall-Fields and Vivian Wolfe Witness Protection Program.

Relocation, housing, food, travel, and security expenses may be covered for a temporary amount of time, when it has been determined that the safety of a witness or the witness' family is jeopardized due to their involvement in the criminal justice system. Assistance from this program, unlike the federal witness protection program, is not permanent, and cannot assist with changing a person's identity.

Funds from this program must be requested through the District Attorney's Office by a law enforcement agency, or by the deputy district attorney assigned to prosecute the criminal case. Requests for expenses covered by this program are reviewed, and approved by a three-member Witness Protection Board. This board is made up of the Attorney General, the Executive Director of Public Safety, and the Executive Director of the Colorado District Attorney's Council or their respective designees.

If you are threatened, intimidated, or asked not to testify because you are a witness in a case, please call the police as soon as possible and then inform the District Attorney's Office. If you believe you are in danger, call 911.

Background Image: Loveland Bike Trail by Sharon Veit. All rights reserved.