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Office of Justice Programs

A Division of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety
 

Crime Victim Rights


Minnesota Statutes Chapter 611A

Minnesota Crime Victim Bill of Rights

Minnesota provides crime victims with important rights as their case moves through the criminal justice system. 

WHEN THE CRIME IS REPORTED TO LAW ENFORCEMENT

You have the right to:

·      Ask the law enforcement agency to keep your identity private in reports available to the public.  Information about sexual assault and child abuse victims is automatically withheld from the public.

·      Be notified of certain crime victim rights by law enforcement.

·      Be provided information on the nearest crime victim assistance program or resource.

·      Apply for reparations (financial compensation) for non-property losses related to a violent crime.

·      In cases of violent crime and domestic abuse where an arrest has been made, be provided notice of the release of the offender along with information on the release conditions and supervising agency.

·      In homicide cases, be notified of rights and procedures for protecting the deceased victim’s property.

 

WHEN THE CASE IS PROSECUTED

You have the right to:

·      Be notified of the prosecution of the case, the prosecution process, and all of your rights.

·      Apply for reparations (financial compensation) for non-property losses related to a violent crime.

·      Be notified of a proposed pretrial diversion referral for certain violent crimes and provide input.

·      Be notified of a change in the hearing schedule if subpoenaed or asked to testify.

·      Request restitution from the offender if there is a conviction.

·      Be notified of the contents of a proposed plea agreement.

·      Ask the prosecutor to request a speedy trial.

·      Be notified of and attend the plea and sentencing hearings.

·      Be present at court proceedings when the offender is a juvenile.

·      Object to a proposed plea agreement at the plea hearing in writing or orally.

·      If a presentence investigation is conducted, provide information about the impact of the crime and your position about the proposed disposition.

·      Give a victim impact statement at the sentencing hearing in writing or orally.

·      If a community member, give a community impact statement at the sentencing hearing.

 

Certain rights address your safety, privacy, and protection during the prosecution, including the right to:

·      Be notified of a bail hearing in cases of violent crime and domestic abuse.

·      A secure waiting area or safeguards against the offender and their supporters in the courthouse.

·      Report witness tampering and violations of criminal no contact or civil protective orders.

·      Ask that your home and employment addresses, telephone numbers, and birthdate be withheld from the offender and in open court.

·      Protection against employer retaliation for you or your family member(s) for taking reasonable time off to attend hearings or to testify in cases of violent crime.

·      In homicide cases, to request a court order preventing an offender from disposing of the deceased victim’s property. Laws also prevent the offender from financially benefitting from the crime.

 

After an offender is convicted, you have a right to:

·      Be notified of the outcome of the case.

·      Be notified of the release or escape from custody of the offender from jail or prison or transfer to a lower security facility. The victim must request this notification.

·      Make a confidential request that the court order an HIV test of the offender in cases of sexual assault and some violent crimes where there has been exposure to bodily fluids during commission of the crime.

·      Be notified of an appeal, the right to attend the related hearing, and the result of that appeal.

·      In felony or violent crime cases, be notified of a proposed modification to the sentence, the related hearing, and the right to provide input.

·      Be notified of an expungement petition and hearing and the right to make a statement orally or in writing. The victim must request this notification.

·      Be notified of a petition to civilly commit the offender, the outcome of that petition, and, if committed, their release or discharge. The victim must request these notifications.

 

To address the financial impact of the crime, you have the right to:

·      Apply for reparations (financial compensation) for non-property losses related to a violent crime.

·      Request restitution from the offender for out-of-pocket expenses directly related to the crime if the offender is convicted.

·      Ask the offender’s probation officer to schedule a hearing if the offender fails to pay restitution. 

 

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, SEXUAL ASSAULT, AND STALKING VICTIMS

You have the right to:

·      Be informed by the prosecutor of any decision to decline or dismiss a case along with information about seeking an order for protection or harassment restraining order at no cost.

·      Terminate a lease without penalty or payment to escape a violent situation.

·      If a domestic violence victim, get a free copy of the incident report the responding law enforcement agency is required to write.

·      If a domestic abuse victim, ask that the prosecutor file a criminal complaint.

·      If a sexual assault victim, have a confidential sexual assault exam at no cost and receive notice of rights and resources from the medical facility.

·      If a sexual assault victim, refuse a polygraph exam without impacting whether the investigation or prosecution will proceed.

 

 

 

Last updated: March 2019

 

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