Support Services for Families & Witnesses

The loss of a family member to homicide can pose significant challenges.  In the aftermath of a homicide, loved ones might have neither the energy nor mental clarity to organize and seek the necessary and available resources for assistance. 

Family members also have to learn how to manage the realities of law enforcement and the criminal justice system. During the initial stages of the investigation the family will likely receive only the basic facts of the case.  However, it is important for family and friends to share information, about the victim’s history and other pertinent information with the investigators.  During the course of the investigation, the investigators will meet with the family to provide certain information.  This will also allow the family to ask any questions they may have.  However, please keep in mind the investigators cannot always answer your questions without compromising the investigation.  Please understand that this does mean the investigators are simply withholding information from you. The premature release of information can have an adverse impact on the case.  

The Victim-Witness Service component of the BPD Homicide Unit advocates for family members of the victim during the stages of grief and recovery. The purpose of Victim-Witness Resource Officers is to maintain positive communication between detectives and these survivors through meetings, forums, initiatives, and other community events. Advocates work with investigators to help grieving families by connecting families to funeral and burial resources and making referrals to public and non-profit counseling and trauma services.

Victim-Witness Resource Officers also work with the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office to improve understanding of protocols and procedures in the criminal justice system. In some cases, circumstances may arise where it is necessary to relocate a survivor and/or witness due to safety concerns. A collaborative effort by the Homicide Unit and the Suffolk District Attorney’s Office is executed for the immediate relocation of such person(s).

If you are interested in learning more about how the BPD can help, please contact Marivelle Crespo at (617) 343-5543. If you have moved, please let us know by filling out this online form.

 

Resources