Helping citizens after they have been victimized by a crime is an important component of the services provided by the Charles County Sheriff’s Office
The CCSO Victim Services Coordinator is available to assist victims of crime and their families at the scene of a crime, during investigations, and following the arrest of a suspect.
A Victim Services Coordinator provides several services, including:
- Guide victims to local, regional, and national victim service organizations;
- Answer questions about and explain the processes of the criminal justice system;
- Ensure victims know the rights they are entitled to by law;
- Assist with providing emergency needs;
- Guide victims to appropriate financial resources and notification services.
For more information, the Victim Services Coordinator can be reached at (301) 609-6423.
Assisting the victims we encounter is important to us but we also want to connect with the victims who have not reported the crimes against them. Domestic violence, sexual assault and other crimes can be traumatic experiences. The CCSO strongly urges all victims of crime to come forward. Please contact us. We are here to help.
Download: Victim Services Resource Guide (PDF)
Victims are guaranteed certain rights by law:
- Rights of Victims or Witnesses of Delinquent Acts (1988)
- Amendment for Crime Victims Rights (1994)
- Victims Rights Notification Act (1996)
Victims or witnesses of a crime should be treated by agents of the state with dignity, respect, and sensitivity during all phases of the criminal justice process. Additionally, the following are established rights:
- To be notified in advance of scheduled court proceedings and be notified if the court proceedings will not be held.
- To be given a waiting area that is separate from the offender and their family during any phase of the investigative proceeding.
- To be informed of financial assistance, criminal injury compensation and other services available for victims and receive information on how to apply.
- To be informed by the police or state’s attorney of offender apprehension, closing of a case, and whom to contact for further information about the case.
- To have property returned promptly unless there is a compelling law enforcement reason to retain it.
- To be informed of the right to request restitution (payment of crime-related costs) and be given help preparing the request.
- To request under certain circumstances that an offender be required to undergo a blood test if body fluid capable of transmitting the HIV virus may have been transferred during victimization.
- To be heard at sentencing, through the submission of a written victim impact statement and/or through speaking directly to the court about the physical, financial and psychological impact a crime has had on the victim and/or the victim’s family.
- To be provided information about the conviction, sentencing, imprisonment and release of the offender
- On written request to the appropriate agency, to be informed any time that the offender is to be released or escapes.
- To receive notice of these rights.
- To stand to enforce these rights.
It is important to remember that the Victim Notification Request Form provides vital information used for pre- and post-sentencing hearings and allows public safety agencies to maintain contact with victims. It is important to notify the Division of Parole and Probation and the State’s Attorney’s Office if you change your address or phone number after the Victim Notification Request Form has been submitted.
You are not required by law to speak to the defendant’s attorney or defendant’s investigator prior to any court proceedings. Please contact the State’s Attorney’s Office for guidance if you are contacted by the defendant’s attorney or defendant’s investigator.
Adult Parole and Probation Contact Information
Division of Parole and Probation
301-870-0627 or 301-934-0452
11850 Park Waldorf Lane, Suite 114
Waldorf, MD 20601
Division of Parole and Probation
4990 Rhode Island Ave, Suite 101
Hyattsville, MD 20781
Victim Notification Registry
Division of Parole and Probation
Office of Victim Services
6776 Reisterstown Rd., Suite 305
Baltimore, MD 21215
|Indian Head District Station||301-743-2222|
|La Plata District Station||301-932-2222|
|Waldorf District Station||301-932-7777|
|Maryland State Police La Plata Barrack||301-392-1200|
|La Plata Police Department||301-934-8421|
|Charles County State’s Attorney||301-932-3350 or 301-870-3413|
|Victim/Witness Assistance Unit||301-932-3360 or 301-870-3413|
Obtain a Peace or Protective Order
Citizens who feel threatened by another person may obtain a peace or protective order barring that person from contacting the citizen.
Peace orders are issued when there is no relationship between the petitioner (the citizen making the complaint) and the respondent (the person against whom the complaint is being made). Protective orders are issued under other circumstances including when the petitioner and respondent are spouses, estranged spouses, live together, have a child in common or are related by blood, marriage or adoption. Protective orders are also issued when the person eligible for relief is a vulnerable adult. Finally, protective orders may also be issued to a parent, stepparent, child or stepchild of either the respondent or the person eligible for relief, if they reside or previously resided with either the respondent or the person eligible for relief for at least 90 days within one year before the filing of the petition.
There are two different types of peace and protective orders. Interim orders are temporary orders issued on weeknights after 4:30 p.m. and on weekends and holidays by the district court commissioner, whose office is located at the Charles County District Court. The orders are served within two business days. Ex-parte orders are may be obtained from the Charles County Courthouse between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, excluding holidays. The orders are valid for seven days following a hearing. They may be extended up to 30 days if the CCSO is unable to serve the papers because the respondent cannot be located. If the respondent is believed to be out of the county, the CCSO will take all possible and practical measures to ensure the order is served, including enlisting the assistance of other law enforcement agencies.
Peace orders are valid for six months and protective orders are valid for a year but can be extended for an additional six months if necessary. There is no fee for obtaining a protective order. Peace orders are $40, which is billed to the petitioner after the order is served.
An adult may file a peace or protective order on behalf of another person only if the person to be protected is a vulnerable adult or a child. An adult may not file on his or her own behalf and on the behalf of another person against the same individual. For instance, a husband cannot file an order on his own behalf and on his wife’s behalf against their neighbor. The husband and wife must file their orders separately. Orders cannot be filed against juveniles.
Tips for Filing a Peace or Protective Order
In order to facilitate the service of the order, the CCSO encourages petitioners to have the full name, date of birth, race, gender, eye color, hair color, approximate height and approximate weight of the respondent. The respondent’s social security number is also helpful. A judge will issue an order using only the name but the CCSO is unable to enter the order into a national system that provides all law enforcement agencies with information about the order. Petitioners are also asked to have the date of birth, race, gender, eye and hair color, height and weight available for the petitioner and any child or vulnerable adult to be protected by the order.
Learn more about visiting the Circuit and District courts.
Victim Notification Resources
There are resources available that help ensure victims of crime are informed of the status of the defendant or defendants in their respective cases. For more information about these resources, please visit the following websites:
- Maryland Victim Information and Notification Everyday (VINE)
- U.S. Department of Justice Victim Notification System
- U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Victim Notification Program