MADISON – Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin, in partnership with the Brown County Sheriff’s Office, the Brown County District Attorney’s office, the Wisconsin Department of Justice, Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin and other victim service groups in the county, are coming together this week to conduct a “mapping” exercise that will trace the path of a victim of crime through the criminal justice process. The group will be looking closely at how the rights provided to victims under Wisconsin’s two-year-old Crime Victims’ Rights constitutional amendment, known as Marsy’s Law, impacts the criminal justice system and its processes in Brown County.

The group will gather on Wednesday and Thursday this week at the Brown County Sheriff’s Office. The goal of the mapping exercise is to highlight what is working well since Marsy’s Law went into effect two years ago, as well as identify areas for improvement. This effort will also bring to light what has been done throughout its implementation to specifically aid in the protection of victim rights throughout the criminal justice process while working within the guidelines of Marsy’s Law.

“This exercise is key to understanding how Marsy’s Law is impacting our communities and the criminal justice system,” said Brown County Sheriff Todd Delain. “Brown County has seen major improvements since the implementation of Marsy’s Law and we want to take this opportunity to assess what’s worked well, and where we can improve. We owe it to victims and their families to always improve the assistance they receive during a process they did not choose.”

The group will be mapping sexual assault and domestic violence incidents from the time the crime is reported through the disposition of the case. The mapping exercise will be facilitated by David Perlman, who works on special projects for the Wisconsin Department of Justice.

“We are grateful to the Brown County stakeholders for taking this important exercise.  We look forward to sharing our findings throughout the state to assist all actors in the criminal justice process with implementing best practices when it comes to providing crime victims the rights they have under Marsy’s Law,” said Nela Kalpic, Director of Outreach for Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin. “We hear countless stories of the impact Marsy’s Law is having on crime victims in Wisconsin and that motivates us to ensure all crime victims have access to their constitutional rights.”

Media Note: For media who wish to schedule an interview with one of the participants or receive additional information please contact Melinda Koski at [email protected]

About Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin 

Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin is a grassroots coalition that championed a unique proposal to give victims of crime equal rights in our state, building on Wisconsin’s laws and history of leading on this issue. The crime victims’ rights state constitutional amendment, also known as Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin, was ratified during the April 7, 2020 election with an overwhelming 75 percent of voters in support.  Marsy’s Law is named after Marsalee “Marsy” Nicholas of California who was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend in 1983. Only one week after her death, Marsy’s mother and brother, Henry T. Nicholas, walked into a grocery store where they were confronted by the accused murderer. The family, who had just come from a visit to Marsy’s grave, was unaware that the accused had been released on bail. In an effort to honor his sister, Dr. Nicholas has made it his life’s mission to give victims and their families constitutional protections and equal rights.

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