Hold Team Meetings . Monitor and Evaluate Your Efforts . Sustain Your SART . Know Your Team . Critical Issues
Law Enforcement Officials
When victims call 911, that first contact with the dispatcher is critical to gaining victims' trustonly with this trust established are victims willing to continue to work with criminal justice service providers. In this respect, when dispatchers are invited to participate on SARTs, the cross-disciplinary communication and training can help ensure that victims' needs are addressed immediately and procedures to safeguard the integrity of the evidence are followed. For example, while dispatchers are determining initial facts about the assault, they can explain that their questions will not delay an officer's response to the scene and then assess victims' medical and safety concerns and tell victims about the importance of not bathing, brushing teeth, eating, drinking, combing hair, changing clothes, or urinating prior to medical forensic exams.
In addition, dispatchers58
- Ask for information about suspects, including their gender, physical description, clothing, vehicle description, weapon possession, and whether there is a relationship between the suspect and victim.
- Assign priority ratings according to protocol.
- Alert the caller to crisis response services.
- Preserve 911 tapes for possible use in court.