The Victim Assistance Program at the Rensselaer County District Attorney’s Office exists to assist crime victims navigate the criminal justice system.  We are here to accompany victims to court for hearings, Grand Jury and trials and to meet with Assistant District Attorney’s and law enforcement and explain the criminal justice process at every step.  We offer criminal justice and emotional support services to all crime victims in Rensselaer County. We assist with compensation claims applications, provide information about the case and make referrals to supportive agencies.  We are available to provide personal and criminal justice advocacy as well.

The Victim Assistance Program also provides assistance with restitution and victim impact statements.  Post-conviction information and parole/probation information is also provided.  We are available for information and assistance even after a case is closed.

The Victim Assistance Program also offers assistance with relocation and emergency personal expenses.

The Victim Assistance Program is comprised of the Director, two Victim Liaisons and a Program Assistant.

Elizabeth Epstein – Director, Victim Assistance Program

Danielle Ruhlman – Victim Liaison for Integrated Domestic Violence Court, Rensselaer City Court and all      Town and Village Courts in Rensselaer County

Breanna Malone – Victim Liaison for Troy City Court

Madasyn Bush – Program Assistant

The Victim Assistance Program is located in the District Attorney’s Office at the Rensselaer County Courthouse, 80 2nd Street, Troy, NY 12180.

Victim Assistance Program Staff are available from 8:30am – 5:00pm Monday through Friday at

(518) 270-4040 and can also be reached after hours through the on-call ADA.

New York State:
Office of Victim Services – It is the Mission of the Crime Victims Board to provide compensation to innocent victims of crime in a timely, efficient and compassionate manner; to fund direct services to crime victims via a network of community-based programs; and to advocate for the rights and benefits of all innocent victims of crime.

Department of Corrections and Community Supervision – Crime victims as well as all other New Yorkers can now use their touch-tone phones to make toll-free calls to get information about convicted felony offenders in the custody of the Department of Correctional Services (DOCS) – the state’s prison system: 1-888-VINE-4NY (1-888-846-3469).

National:
The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) – was established by the 1984 Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) to oversee diverse programs that benefit victims of crime. OVC provides substantial funding to state victim assistance and compensation programs—the lifeline services that help victims to heal. The agency supports trainings designed to educate criminal justice and allied professionals regarding the rights and needs of crime victims. OVC also sponsors an annual event in April to commemorate National Crime Victims Rights Week (NCVRW). OVC is one of five bureaus and four offices with grant-making authority within the Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. OVC’s Divisions and Units include Terrorism and International Victims Unit (TIVU), Technical Assistance, Publications, and Information Resources Unit (TAPIR), Federal Crime Victims Division (FCVD), State Compensation and Assistance Division (SCAD), Special Projects Division (SPD).