Victim Rights

The Right to be Heard, Present & Informed

The Colorado Victim Rights Act (VRA) provides constitutional protections for victims of crime, ensuring they are treated with fairness, respect, dignity and that they are free from intimidation, harassment and abuse.

Qualifying Crimes

Victims of specific crimes – such as crimes against persons – are eligible for constitutional protections under the Victim Rights Act. Established by the Colorado General Assembly, some of the offenses include:

  • Murder and Manslaughter 
  • Criminally Negligent and Vehicular Homicide
  • Assault and Menacing
  • Sexual Assault and Indecent Exposure
  • Child Abuse and Domestic Violence
  • Child Prostitution and Human Trafficking
  • Biased-Motivated Crimes
  • Kidnapping and Stalking
  • First-Degree Burglary and Aggravated Robbery
  • Vehicular Assault and Careless Driving Resulting in Death
  • Crimes Against At-Risk Victims

District Attorney Responsibilities

In qualifying VRA cases, the District Attorney’s Office is constitutionally required to consult, notify and/or provide information to victims regarding:

  • Charging decisions
  • Reduction of charges or case dismissal
  • Negotiated pleas
  • Date, time and place of critical stages in court proceedings
  • Name of the prosecutor and court assigned to the case
  • Availability of any resources and/or transportation to and from the court
  • Scheduling changes or cancellations
  • Victim Impact Statements
  • Hearings to reconsider or modify a sentence
  • Notification of the offender’s probation status
  • Availability of restorative justice practices
  • Defendant’s release, escape, death or transfer

Outside of the responsibilities of the District Attorney’s Office, other criminal justice stakeholders – including law enforcement, the court and state agencies – have additional constitutional obligations in respect to victims of crime.

For more information on the responsibilities of government stakeholders, critical stages, qualifying crimes and other constitutional rights under the VRA, view the Colorado Division of Criminal Justice VRA Brochure (PDF).