New Bill Would Notify Victims of Court Date

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Lake County State's Attorneys Office


Feb. 14, 2022


For Immediate Release
Contact: Jim Newton
(224) 374-2376


Morrison Introduces Rinehart-Backed Legislation to Automatically Notify Victims of Court Date


(Lake County, IL) - 

At the request of Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart, State Senator Julie Morrison (D-Lake Forest) introduced a measure to create a texting system that would automatically update victims and witnesses on pending court dates. 

“We have an option to make the court system as accessible as possible to victims of crime,” Morrison said. “This pilot program is innovative and will make a difference in how Lake County will be able to communicate with victims and their families.”

Morrison’s proposal would create a pilot program through the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office to text victims and witnesses about upcoming court dates.

The Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office employs 12 full-time victim-witness coordinators who guide and support victims through the court process. The coordinators work to connect the survivors of crimes with services while also educating them about how their own case will proceed through court. Part of the coordinators’ duties include updating victims and witnesses on changes in court dates. 

“Our office is here to support every victim in every way we can. We need this ‘safety net’ of information so that we can be 100% sure we are reaching those who need the courthouse the most. Our coordinators are amazing,” Rinehart said. “Some of them have over 150 victims to contact. With this new program, they can prioritize individualized support while this system quickly delivers basic and accurate information to every victim and every witness.” 

The Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office estimated that it supports more than 1,000 victims at a time. While the program spearheaded by Morrison would start in Lake County, it would give other prosecutors’ offices a chance to learn and build upon the Lake County program down the road.  

Senate Bill 3779 awaits a hearing in the Appropriations-Judiciary Committee.


Lake County State's Attorney's Office
18 N. County Street
Waukegan, IL 60085  
Phone: (847) 377-3000