Chickasaw Nation creates hotline to support victims of crime
As part of its comprehensive plan to assume its newly expanded criminal justice duties the Chickasaw Nation has enhanced its criminal code, law enforcement capability and prosecutorial apparatus. It is also keeping the other side of the equation – victims – uppermost in its plans.
"Offering comfort, counseling and other assistance to victims is a responsibility we take very seriously," said Governor Anoatubby. "While bringing criminals to justice is important, it is also important to ensure victims are treated justly and compassionately." Todd Crawford, Chickasaw Nation undersecretary of support and sustainability, said their efforts center on comforting victims of crimes and getting them in touch with programs and services designed to support them.
“Our desire is to listen to the victims and their families’ needs and getting them in contact with the appropriate part of the Chickasaw Nation to meet their need,” Crawford said.
These may include legal assistance, law enforcement support and connection to various programs and services offered by the Chickasaw Nation appropriate to the individuals calling the hotline. Services available include probation management, sexual assault assistance, child support, child welfare and strong family development.
The hotline also helps keep victims informed through the judicial process.
"Some may have questions about a person who is currently incarcerated, and want to know if and when they may be released. You may want to know who has responsibility,” Crawford said, adding services are available in cases of previous convictions as well as criminal charges currently being adjudicated.
The hotline may also be used to report crimes or supply additional information about a crime or alleged perpetrator.
Crawford said those interested in learning the status of a family member who has been arrested are also encouraged to call the toll-free number or email the Crime Victim’s Support Services Hotline Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The service is also available to all First Americans residing in the 13-county Chickasaw reservation. The toll-free Crime Victim’s Support Services Hotline number is 833-774-1601. Local residents can call 580-757-9068. Email address is CrimeVictimsSupport@chickasaw.net