Fairland Police awarded grant for crime victim advocate, planning guidelines

Ottawa County Sheriffs office will also benefit
Fairland Police awarded grant for crime victim advocate, planning guidelines

The Fairland Police Department has never had a crime victim advocate, but that’s about to change, as the department was awarded an $180,000 Department of Justice grant.

“The sky is the limit right now, we’ve never had one, and we’re going to put him to good use” said Fairland Police Chief, Aaron Richardson.

A crime victim advocate can help victims of any crime, working as a liaison between the victim and law enforcement, they could help with getting the victim to and from appointments or court dates or helping with counseling.

“We have high hopes that it will start bringing some real change and some real good things for victims who have not had some good things happen in their lives” added Chief Richardson.

The grant will be used over a three-year period. Fairland Police is putting together a plan for how to successfully use it.

“We’re setting up a little committee with the Sheriff’s office, I am going to include our city court system and offer it to the county court system also, and we’ll just kind of come up with some parameters and say you know here’s what we want him to be used for here’s not what his purpose is” added Chief Richardson.

A memorandum of understanding will allow Ottawa County to use the crime victim advocate.
The county, like Fairland, has never had one due to funding issues.

“Some tribes have advocates that we utilize as well, but you know, anytime we try to improve our advocacy across the board through any type of organization or advocates through any agency I think is very important” said Ottawa County Sheriff, Jeremy Floyd.

They are hoping to have the money released to them by the first of the year.

“It’s mainly setting up the parameters to start doing some training on both sides and start getting prepared, we’re excited” said Chief Richardson.

Once the grant money is released to them, they will start looking to hire the person for the job.

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