Being a victim or witness of crime can be distressing and traumatic. This page is designed to provide you with help and support, relevant information and advice with links to other partner organisations that can assist you.
It is our aim to support people through this difficult time by providing a service that meets the needs of the victim.
If you have been a victim of crime, you have the right to receive a certain level of service from the criminal justice system.
The Ministry of Justice published a Code of Practice for Victims of Crime. This document explains what information, services and support victims of crime can expect to receive at every stage of their journey through the criminal justice system.
The Code tells you what you can expect from each criminal justice agency, including the police, the Crown Prosecution Service, and the courts:
- The right to be kept informed about your case by the police
- The right to hear when a suspect has been arrested, charged, bailed or sentenced
- The right to apply for extra help when giving evidence in court (called ‘special measures’) if you are vulnerable or intimidated or a child or young person.
- The right to be told when an offender will be released.
- The right to access support.
In April 2016, the Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner opened the Victims’ Hub. The hub consists of the Dorset Police Victims’ Bureau and the commissioned victims’ service supplier, Victim Support.
Any victim of crime can access the support services whether they have reported the crime to the police or not. If you are a victim of crime, you can access the free support services by visiting the hub at the following address:
In November 2013, the Dorset Victims’ Bureau was launched, with a primary aim of meeting the Police and Crime Commissioner’s manifesto promises.
The Dorset Victims’ Bureau consists of a dedicated team actively working to keep victims informed about the progress of their crime investigation, in accordance with the Code of Practice for Victims of Crime.
If you report a crime or have been a victim of crime, you will receive a letter from the Victims’ Bureau. Included with this letter is a 'Victim of Crime' leaflet, which offers advice and includes details of support services available to victims.
The service provided by the Victims’ Bureau is free and they can be contacted by: Dialling 101 and asking to speak to the Victim Bureau.
Support for Victims of Crime
From October 2014, Police and Crime Commissioners are now responsible for commissioning local victim services. Victim Support has been commissioned by the Dorset Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner to provide an enhanced service to the county’s victims for the next three years.
If you’ve been affected by crime, call your local victim care team in Dorset on 0300 3030 163.
Lines are open Monday to Friday 9am-6.30pm.
If you need support outside of these hours, call the Support line for free on 08 08 16 89 111 or request support via their website.
Victim Support is an independent charity and you can contact them for support regardless of whether you’ve contacted the police, and no matter how long ago the crime took place. They will help you for as long as it takes to overcome the impact of crime.
How Victim Support Can Help
Victim Support provides emotional and practical help to people who have been affected by crime in Dorset. In 2015, Victim Support offered immediate support to over 5,000 people affected by crime in Dorset, and gave in-depth support to more than 500 people. If you call your local Victim Support team, they will make sure you get the information and support you need. This might be arranging a meeting for you to talk to them and receive emotional support in confidence, helping you to fill out a compensation form or get advice on how to make your home more secure, or referring you to other specialist organisations that can also help.