Posted Friday, April 4th, 2014

The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office marked National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 6-12, with a Recognition and Remembrance Ceremony on Monday, April 7, honoring victims and advocates of victims’ rights.

The keynote speaker for the ceremony was Assemblywoman BettyLou DeCroce from the 26th Legislative District.

Assemblywoman DeCroce and her late husband, former Assemblyman Alex DeCroce, have always been in the forefront of the Victims’ Rights movement, said acting Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp. Knapp noted that Alex DeCroce sponsored Victims’ Rights legislation while in the Assembly that was enacted into law in his name last year.

National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, a national remembrance since 1981, is an opportunity for communities, victims and their loved ones, and professionals serving victims to join together and reflect on the progress achieved in victims’ rights, Knapp said.

The theme for 2014 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week is “30 years: Restoring the Balance of Justice.”

According to Knapp, 30 years ago, crime victims did not have rights, access to crime victim compensation, or services to help rebuild their lives. They were often excluded from courtrooms, treated as an afterthought by the criminal justice system, and denied an opportunity to speak at sentencing. Today, he said, all states have enacted crime victims’ rights laws and established crime victims’ compensation funds.

Knapp said he is proud of the outstanding team of capable and dedicated professionals in the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office who assist victims of crime and advocate on their behalf.