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Defense-Initiated Victim Outreach in Virginia Capital Cases: An Introduction

Sattler, Maryl
June 4, 2015

Source: (2011) Institute for Restorative Justice and Restorative Dialogue at The University of Texas at Austin.

DIVO was created based on notions of restorative justice. It is a process intended
to open a line of communication between victim survivors and the defense team. This is done through an independent, trained victim liaison. The victim liaison is not a member of the defense team. He or she is not covered by attorney-client privilege and does not have access to confidential information about the defense. The role of the victim liaison is to determine what victim survivors need that that the defense team may be able to provide: “His or her objective must be, solely, to engage the survivor . . . wholly on the survivors’ terms and to offer a relationship with the offender, through the defense team, that may satisfy at least some of the survivors’ needs and interests. The liaison can have no other agenda.” (excerpt)


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