Florida Senate - 2022                                    SB 1012
       By Senator Burgess
       20-00474-22                                           20221012__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to victims of crimes; amending s.
    3         960.001, F.S.; requiring law enforcement personnel to
    4         ensure that victims are given information about their
    5         right to employ private counsel; encouraging The
    6         Florida Bar to develop a registry of attorneys willing
    7         to serve as crime victim advocates on a pro bono
    8         basis; providing an effective date.
   10  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   12         Section 1. Paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of section
   13  960.001, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   14         960.001 Guidelines for fair treatment of victims and
   15  witnesses in the criminal justice and juvenile justice systems.—
   16         (1) The Department of Legal Affairs, the state attorneys,
   17  the Department of Corrections, the Department of Juvenile
   18  Justice, the Florida Commission on Offender Review, the State
   19  Courts Administrator and circuit court administrators, the
   20  Department of Law Enforcement, and every sheriff’s department,
   21  police department, or other law enforcement agency as defined in
   22  s. 943.10(4) shall develop and implement guidelines for the use
   23  of their respective agencies, which guidelines are consistent
   24  with the purposes of this act and s. 16(b), Art. I of the State
   25  Constitution and are designed to implement s. 16(b), Art. I of
   26  the State Constitution and to achieve the following objectives:
   27         (a) Information concerning services available to victims of
   28  adult and juvenile crime.—As provided in s. 27.0065, state
   29  attorneys and public defenders shall gather information
   30  regarding the following services in the geographic boundaries of
   31  their respective circuits and shall provide such information to
   32  each law enforcement agency with jurisdiction within such
   33  geographic boundaries. Law enforcement personnel shall ensure,
   34  through distribution of a victim’s rights information card or
   35  brochure at the crime scene, during the criminal investigation,
   36  and in any other appropriate manner, that victims are given, as
   37  a matter of course at the earliest possible time, information
   38  about:
   39         1. The availability of crime victim compensation, if
   40  applicable;
   41         2. Crisis intervention services, supportive or bereavement
   42  counseling, social service support referrals, and community
   43  based victim treatment programs;
   44         3. The role of the victim in the criminal or juvenile
   45  justice process, including what the victim may expect from the
   46  system as well as what the system expects from the victim;
   47         4. The stages in the criminal or juvenile justice process
   48  which are of significance to the victim and the manner in which
   49  information about such stages can be obtained;
   50         5. The right of a victim, who is not incarcerated,
   51  including the victim’s parent or guardian if the victim is a
   52  minor, the lawful representative of the victim or of the
   53  victim’s parent or guardian if the victim is a minor, and the
   54  next of kin of a homicide victim, to be informed, to be present,
   55  and to be heard when relevant, at all crucial stages of a
   56  criminal or juvenile proceeding, to the extent that this right
   57  does not interfere with constitutional rights of the accused, as
   58  provided by s. 16(b), Art. I of the State Constitution;
   59         6. In the case of incarcerated victims, the right to be
   60  informed and to submit written statements at all crucial stages
   61  of the criminal proceedings, parole proceedings, or juvenile
   62  proceedings; and
   63         7. The right of a victim to a prompt and timely disposition
   64  of the case in order to minimize the period during which the
   65  victim must endure the responsibilities and stress involved to
   66  the extent that this right does not interfere with the
   67  constitutional rights of the accused; and
   68         8. The right of a victim to employ private counsel
   69  consistent with the constitutional rights of the accused. The
   70  Florida Bar is encouraged to develop a registry of attorneys who
   71  are willing to serve on a pro bono basis as advocates for crime
   72  victims.
   73         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2022.