On April 23, 2013, Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley delivered the following remarks at Ruggles MBTA station to roll out an advertising campaign observing National Crime Victim Rights Week. The campaign was funded by a grant from the Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime that Conley’s office sought and obtained last year.
“In the aftermath of last week’s terrible tragedies in Boston and across the river, we saw a tremendous outpouring of support from people who wanted to help the investigation. We got tips, phone calls, photos, and videos from people across the city. And as we all know, that assistance paid off. We’re much closer to justice for the victims because of that help.
“But in the time since Monday’s bombings, we’ve had two homicides in the City of Boston, and those victims deserve justice too. Their families deserve the same outpouring of support we saw over the past few days.
“We’re here to observe National Crime Victim Rights Week and remind people that the interests of justice depend on victims who report crimes and witnesses who testify about them. The Department of Justice, which funded the ad campaign we rolled out this month, says that as many as 50% of crimes in the US aren’t even reported, meaning too many people out there who aren’t getting the results they deserve.
“We want to change that in Boston and Suffolk County. The people you see here today – Suffolk prosecutors, our victim-witness advocates, Boston and Transit police, clergy, and social service providers – we’re all on the same team: your team. Whether you work on Boylston Street or Blue Hill Ave, your family and your safety are important to us.
“I fought for years to bring a Witness Protection Fund to Massachusetts, and now that we have it Suffolk County leads the state in using it to protect victims and witnesses from intimidation. Our victim advocates work in 10 courthouses across Boston and Chelsea, and they’re ready to help with restraining orders, transitional assistance, safety planning, and countless other concerns.
“We’re asking that the people of Boston rise above the silence and be a voice for justice – not just during National Crime Victim Rights Week, but every day of the year.”
[Introduction of Reverend Jeff Brown, MBTA Customer Service Agent Kerry Andrade, Boston Police Superintendent William Gross, and Pastor William E. Dickerson II]
“Before we wrap up, I want to recognize some additional partners. Chris Byner from the Boston Center for Youth and Families, who’s done so much for so many years to change the direction of young lives headed down the wrong path. Reverend Wayne Daley from the Charles Street AME Church and Boston TenPoint Coalition, a tremendous source of anti-violence work in the City of Boston and a resource for so many families in times of crisis. Carolyn MacNeil, director of the Boston Police Department’s Crime Watch Unit, which works every day to deter crime and reduce fear among the people who live in this great city of neighborhoods. Bromley Heath Development Coordinator Jacque Furtado. Sworn or civilian, ministers and laypeople, we’re working to protect the rights of victims – the right to see justice done and the right to have a voice in that process. I want to recognize all of them. Now let’s go out there and do some good!”
The advertising campaign placed more than 300 advertisements in English and Spanish urging victims and witnesses to “Rise Above the Silence, Be a Voice for Justice” on MBTA buses and subway cars. It also provided several hundred reusable tote bags printed with the same message, which Conley and partners distributed to commuters.
For other Suffolk County District Attorney Press releases, access their website at http://www.suffolkdistrictattorney.com/category/press-office/press-releases/press-releases-2013.