History of the Victim Assistance Unit
The Victim Assistance Unit of the Porter County Prosecutor's Office was established in 1983.
Chief Deputy Nancy Vaidik saw the need for crime victims to have representation within the criminal justice system. She went on to become a judge in Porter County and currently is an Appellate Court Judge for the State of Indiana. With the aid of an intern, they wrote a grant for the Sexual Assault Recovery Project, which is still in existence to this day.
The Victim Assistance Unit, which began in a closet-sized space with one part-time employee, has grown into a full-time staff of five employees with five offices. It has developed into a well-respected statewide model program.
There are three specialized advocates who handle all cases involving domestic / family violence and sexual assault.
With the support of our prosecutor, advocates screen all criminal charges filed in Porter County and determine the victims of crime cases.
The Porter County Prosecutor's Victim Assistance Office is a public organization. We are funded partially by VOCA (Victims of Crime Act) funds. These funds became available in 1984 from the U.S. Department of Justice. The money is generated entirely from fines and penalties levied against criminals convicted of federal crimes. The Porter County Prosecutor's Office funds the remainder of the Victim Assistance Unit's staff and all other costs.
All services provided by the Victim Assistance Unit are free.