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Adequacy of Local Victim Support Services

The traumatic experience of being
victimized has the potential to leave deep physical, psychological, and
emotional wounds. Following her escape from the hands of a serial killer, Lisa
McVey faced the challenge of returning to her everyday life. The memories of
her seizure, repeated sexual assault, and captivity left Lisa with a need for
many psychological, emotional, and social services to help her readjust to her
life. According to research by the National Institutes of Health published in
2011, victims of rape or other forms of violent attack face an increased
likelihood of developing symptoms associated with Post Traumatic Stress
Disorder (PTSD) in their lifetimes. The research also found that victims of
violent crime have an increased risk of developing panic disorder or depression
(Kilpatrick & Acierno, 2003).

There are many services that someone
such as Lisa McVey may require after victimization. Self-help groups can aid
victims in gathering support from others, which can provide a sense of comfort
and help eliminate the feeling of being alone. Individual or group therapy sessions
can help victims process their traumatic experiences. Psychiatric services make
medication available to help victims work through symptoms associated with
victimization. Without the availability of access to such services, a victim’s
attempt to readjust to normal life can present unnecessary—and often
crippling—difficulties.

For this Discussion, select a type of
victim. Then conduct a search to identify victim services, for that type of
victim, that are available in your area. You may find it useful to utilize this
week’s Learning Resources to help your search. Consider whether or not the
services you select are adequate to protect and support victims.

With these thoughts in mind, select a
type of victim to use for this Discussion.

Post by Day 1 a brief description of the type of victim
you selected. Then describe at least two services available in your area to
help protect and support that type of victim. Finally, explain whether or not
the services you selected are adequate to protect and support victims.

One and a half
page with at least two reference….

It
is important that you cover all the topics identified in the assignment.
Covering the topic does not mean mentioning the topic BUT presenting an
explanation from the readings.

To
get maximum points you need to follow the requirements listed for
this assignments 1) look at the page limits 2) review and follow APA rules
3) create SUBHEADINGS to identify the key sections you are presenting and
4) Free from typographical and sentence construction errors.

Readings

  • Davis, R.
    C., Lurigio, A. J., & Herman, S. (Eds.). (2013). Victims of crime (4th ed.).
    Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
    • Chapter
      12, “Legal
      Rights for Crime Victims in the Criminal Justice System
    • Chapter
      17, “Victimization: An International Perspective”
  • Wallace,
    H., & Roberson, C. (2011). Introduction
    and History of Victimology
    . In Victimology: Legal, psychological, and
    social perspectives
    . (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice
    Hall.
    Reprinted by permission of Pearson Education, Inc., Upper Saddle River,
    NJ.
  • Office for
    Victims of Crime. (n.d.). Directory of Crime Victim Services. Retrieved
    January 31, 2012, from http://ovc.ncjrs.gov/findvictimservices/

Media

  • Laureate
    Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2012). Rape
    victims
    .
    Baltimore, MD: Author.
    • Transcript 
    • BELOW ARE THE TWO RAPE CASE TRANSCRIPT






“Rape Victims”
Multimedia Program Transcript 

CASE 1977

EMILY: “Things
were… different in the ‘70s.  We didn’t
always have the right name for what husbands did.” 

EMILY: “We were
young. I was just 28 then. 23 when we got married” 

EMILY: “He went
to happy hour after work, and when he came home I hadn’t made him his dinner
yet and he got angry – which wasn’t new – and he hit me.” 

EMILY: “The
hitting wasn’t new either.  It was what
he did after that… that was new.  That
was rape. [PAUSE] It just wasn’t what the police would let me call it then.” 

 EMILY: “After my husband finally passed
out, I took off. I just ran. I had nowhere to go, because I didn’t know about
things like women’s shelters back then. The only thing I could think to do was
to run to my sister’s house a few blocks away, so that’s what I did. And that’s
when I called 911.” 

EMILY: “The
police in 1977 didn’t exactly believe that a husband really could ‘rape’ his
wife. They listened to my story, but they didn’t bother taking any notes, and
they didn’t call an ambulance – even after my sister kept telling them that
this wasn’t the first time I had been hit. I wasn’t even given the option to
file a police report.” 

EMILY: “They just
made it all seem like it was all part of the job, you know? ‘For better or for
worse, until death do you part.’” 

EMILY: “Eventually,
my sister drove me to the hospital, and we waited for hours in the emergency
room until we were finally allowed to see a doctor. He asked me a few
questions, gave me a quick exam, wrote me a prescription for some pain
medication and that was that. No mental health professionals came in, no social
workers, no one took any pictures of my bruises, nothing. Just some aspirin.” 

EMILY: “Did I
ever press charges against my own husband? Boy, I’m glad that question doesn’t
sound as crazy today as it did when I tried to back in ’77.” 

EMILY: “That was
the first year the state even had a marital rape law on the books.  My sister told me I should press charges, and
I knew she was right, but the lawyer I found wasn’t so sure.

EMILY: “He said
the law was ‘too new’ for a jury to really believe that a crime had actually
been committed – especially because I hadn’t tried to defend myself when my
husband first started attacking me.” 

EMILY: “The
hospital we went to didn’t administer a rape kit, and back then we didn’t even
know that we could ask for one.  So by
the time we even thought about pressing charges, any evidence there might have
been was long gone and all those bruises had healed. That was going to make
proving the case incredibly difficult.” 

EMILY: “Eighteen
months. That’s how long it took my case to go to trial. By then, I’d moved in
with my sister and I hadn’t seen my husband for months until I had to go to
court and testify against him.” 

EMILY: “And as
I’m sitting there talking about what he’d done to me, I see him sitting there,
staring at me.  And some of his friends
and his family are sitting there behind him, listening, and shaking their heads
– not at him, but at me.  Like they
couldn’t believe I would accuse him of doing something so disgusting.  Like there must be more to the story than
just that, and what a terrible person I was to put him through all this.” 

EMILY: “His
lawyer asked me to describe, in vivid detail, not only everything that had
happened between us that night, but also every little detail about our ‘regular
sex lives. He was trying to say that because I hadn’t fought back, and because
we did have consensual sex at other times, that what had happened that night
couldn’t possibly be rape.” 

EMILY: “And I’m
sitting there trying to remember all those little details that happened 18
months ago, and it’s like I’m just fogging over. There would be times I’d be
standing in the grocery store and I’d just freeze, stone still in the cereal
aisle, because it would all come back to me in a rush and I’d remember
everything. And yet there I am, trying to answer this man’s questions and all I
keep doing is forgetting little bits and pieces.” 

EMILY: “Eventually,
the judge threw the case out due to lack of evidence. So I spent almost two
years calling off work so I could go to court, using up my vacation time so I
could try to prove that my husband had raped me, and in the end it was all for
nothing.  Just a lot of money wasted and
a lot of unpaid sick days I spent at home in bed alone, wondering what I’d done
to deserve this.” 

EMILY: “And he
never spent a day in jail for any of it. Not for a minute.” 

CASE 2007 

JOAN: “I just ran
straight to the shelter. I’d never even been inside that shelter before.  But a girl at work had given me a pamphlet
from there – ‘just in case,’ is what she said at the time – and I remember thinking,
‘When would I ever need to go there?’ Because I never had a reason to… until
that morning.” 

JOAN: “That was
the morning my husband finally thought that he had proof that I was cheating on
him, and he figured he was gonna punish me for it.” 

JOAN: “He’d
already hit me a few times before, when he felt like I deserved it, but he had
never forced me to have sex before. Not like that. Not that angry.” 

JOAN: “My first
thought wasn’t to call the police. My first thought was, ‘I need to get to that
shelter.’ So as soon as he got up and went to take a shower, I just threw on
whatever I could find to wear and I ran all the way to that shelter.” 

JOAN: “There was
a volunteer working there named Maria. She could tell I was in trouble, so she
asked me what happened. I was shaking so bad, I don’t even think I was making
any sense.” 

JOAN: “But Maria
knew what I meant. She said to me, ‘So, your husband raped you?’ And I said,
“Well, I don’t know…”  And that’s when
Maria said, “If anyone, even your husband, forces you to have sex against your
will, it’s rape. We need to get you to the hospital, and we need to call the
police.” 

JOAN: “So Maria
helped me get myself together, and then she arranged for me to be taken into
emergency care at the hospital. She also asked them to perform a rape kit to
gather any physical evidence.” 

JOAN: “While I
was there, a social worker came to see me and she got a case file started for
me. And when that was all over, Maria brought me back to the shelter, where
she’d made me up a room with a bed and some fresh clothes, and she said I could
stay here as long as I needed, until I felt like I was ready to leave.” 

JOAN: “I spent a
couple weeks here, all told.  But in a
way, I guess I never really left. 
Because when I was here, I talked with Maria and the other counselors
and volunteers about all the years of physical and emotional abuse my husband
had put me through, and they told me I was not alone.  And the longer I stayed here, the more women
I met who’d been through the same things I’d been through, or their sisters, or
their mothers.  Some of them, they were
still going through it, even then.  Even
now.  So that’s why I go back there now,
to volunteer.  Because by the time I was
ready to leave, I was even more ready to come back and help the next person
like me who came through that door.” 

JOAN: “A police
officer came to the shelter on that first day to take a statement from me, and
he tried to get as much detail as he could about what happened.  He told me I was entitled to victim’s
compensation for any expenses I had to pay for this case, if I decided to press
charges.  Even the emergency room bill
would be covered by the state.” 

JOAN: “The big
thing I remember was my lawyer telling me, ‘If they try asking you any questions
about your own sexual past, don’t say a word. 
You just pause, and I’ll motion for an objection.’” 

JOAN: “That’s
because the rape shield laws we have now forbid anybody from bringing up
anything like that. Lawyers used to try to make a woman sound promiscuous, so
it would look like she was the one who was responsible for getting raped. And
then the jury might start thinking that a woman maybe brought that rape on
herself.” 

JOAN: “My husband
is currently in jail, serving a five year sentence for spousal rape. By the
time we went to court, marital rape laws had been on the books for thirty
years, so there was a lot of precedent for a case like mine. That didn’t mean
it was easy.” 

JOAN: “I still
had to rebuild my whole life without him – without the abuse, without the
physical, emotional, and psychological trauma that he had caused me for so
long.  But the shelter helped me find a
therapist and a support group for victims of domestic abuse.  So even though he was gone, I didn’t have to
heal all by myself.  For the first time
in a long time, I didn’t have to feel like I was alone.

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