New Prosecutor’s Guide provides practical help for prosecuting crimes against people with disabilities
February 21, 2020
COLUMBUS, OHIO – Today the Adult Advocacy Centers (AACs) are proud to release a new publication, Prosecutor’s Guide for Crimes Involving Victims with Disabilities, which provides practical help for prosecutors in Ohio as they work to build cases against perpetrators of crimes against people with disabilities. The comprehensive, 28-page book contains five chapters:
- Chapter 1: Introduction to Victims with Disabilities, which provides definitions of types of disabilities;
- Chapter 2: Relevant Law for Cases in Which the Victim Has a Disability, which lists specific criminal code in Ohio’s books;
- Chapter 3: Special Considerations When the Victim Has a Disability, which discusses culpability, tactics a perpetrator might use to excuse their actions and explains reasonable accommodations a victim might need;
- Chapter 4: Prepping Your Case, which outlines communication guidelines and provides information about community resources; and
- Chapter 5: References, which includes an extensive glossary and citations.
The Guide was written by the Adult Advocacy Centers and consulting author Adonna Wilson-Baney with input from many local, regional and statewide agencies, including: Advocacy and Protective Services Inc. (APSI), Disability Rights Ohio (DRO), Modell Consulting Group LLC, the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD), the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS), the Ohio Victim Witness Association (OVWA), the Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities and the Stark County Prosecutor’s Office.
“People with disabilities so often don’t see justice served when they become victims of crime, and the AACs want to work with the disability community to change that,” says Katherine Yoder, Executive Director of the Adult Advocacy Centers. “We are so thankful to the organizations who assisted in the creation of this very important publication. We believe it is the most comprehensive guidebook of its nature ever written, and we hope that prosecutors throughout Ohio find great value in the information we’ve gathered.”
The AACs will be hold two-day trainings in August and September for prosecutors to learn how to better serve people with disabilities. The trainings are free thanks to a VOCA grant from the Ohio Attorney General’s Office. Find out more on the AACs website.
The Adult Advocacy Centers (AACs) were founded to serve adults with disabilities who are alleged victims or witnesses of abuse, maltreatment or neglect. Ohio will be the first state to develop the AACs model – one-point facilities equipped to provide holistic, accessible, trauma-informed services to adult crime victims with disabilities. Learn more at adultadvocacycenters.org.