Prosecutors know they need 12 jurors to be unanimous for a conviction. What most prosecutors don’t know is that it is the 13th juror in the box who controls the fate of their case. The 13th juror is never selected for jury duty but is present in every case. That juror is the expert on what “real” rape looks like and how “real” rape victims and “real” rapists behave. If prosecutors don’t take care to remove the 13th juror, they will infuse myth and bias into every aspect of the case, starting with the decision to charge. The charging standard often cited by prosecutors is “Would a jury in my jurisdiction convict?” This standard often leads to decisions influenced entirely by the 13th juror. Allowing myth and bias to impact prosecutorial decisions leads to low prosecution and conviction rates. In part one of this two-part session, attendees will learn how the 13th juror is impacting charging decisions and learn standards for charging that eliminate myth and bias from their decision making. In part two, attendees will learn trauma-informed trial practices from voir dire through closing arguments, including how to educate a jury on myths and bias, and utilizing expert witnesses.
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Achieving Justice: The Prosecutor's Role in Human Trafficking Cases - Jane Anderson, Nicole Bell, Rebecca Bender
Jane Anderson, Nicole Bell, Rebecca Bender
The criminal justice system can serve as both an on-ramp to and an-off ramp from sex trafficking and exploitation. As gatekeepers within the criminal justice system, prosecutors are uniquely positioned to identify sexually exploited women and girls, make fair charging decisions, facilitate criminal record relief, and link survivors with services and support. In these ways, prosecutors can clear the way to a different life path and achieve justice for survivors. In this workshop, the presenters will bring their lived and professional experience to this workshop, which will emphasize the prosecutors’ duties to achieve justice over convictions, and to proactively remedy wrongful convictions. Strategies for engaging survivors, avoiding wrongful criminalization, and providing access to just criminal record relief will also be discussed.
CASE STUDY: Adult Sexual Assault Prosecutions: The Right & Wrong in Jury Selection - Gabrielle Massey, Ekua Asserbill
Gabrielle Massey, Ekua Asserbill
The defendant was arrested in March 2018 after a standoff with law enforcement in which he barricaded himself and his estranged wife in his home with a loaded pistol and refused to exit for 11 hours. Hostage negotiators worked with the Defendant to let his wife to leave and eventually to resolve the standoff peacefully. After his wife safely exited the home, law enforcement learned that she had been brutally beaten, restrained, sexually assaulted, and threatened at gunpoint by the Defendant. This case study will reshape how we select prospective jurors in adult sexual assault cases, particularly when there is a previous sexual relationship. The presenters will provide portions of the voir dire used at trial and discuss hypotheticals, scaled questioning, and discussion questions. Additionally, the presenters will solicit discussion from the attendees about ways to best identify those who can sympathize with adult sexual assault survivors.
Advancing Justice with DNA Technologies - Patti Powers, Misty Marra
Patti Powers, Misty Marra
Advanced DNA technologies can generate leads that result in the apprehension and prosecution of suspects when submitting evidence to CODIS does not provide a “hit” on DNA connected to crime scenes or to persons already in the system. The expanded use of publicly searchable databases and forensic genetic genealogy (FGG), familial searching through state CODIS databases in permitting jurisdictions, and phenotype testing to generate genetic-based descriptions of unknown suspects, has opened the door to cutting-edge investigations in both cold and current cases. This workshop will explore the capabilities of DNA STR and Y-STR testing, the use of CODIS for familial searching when authorized, and FGG searches. The presenter will also explore legal issues with collecting abandoned DNA to compare with extant DNA in FGG searches, as well as the effective presentation of investigatory evidence at trial.
INTERACTIVE: Aquatic Crimes Against Women (ACAW) Staged as Noncriminal Swimming Pool & Open Water Deaths - Andrea Zaferes, Walt "Butch" Hendrick, Tiffany Lee
Andrea Zaferes, Walt “Butch” Hendrick, Tiffany Lee
When investigators respond to a crime scene involving water, several questions are inevitable…. Is this an accidental drowning? Was she homicidally drowned? Is this a strangulation staged as a suicidal drowning? Or is this a postmortem body disposal? Just as fire investigators and crash reconstructionists need training to recognize, identify, document, and investigate their respective scenes, anyone working cases involving pools or open water scenes need training on the realities of what happens to living and dead bodies in water, the drowning process, how to determine truthfulness and deception during interviews, processing aquatic scenes, recovering small submerged evidence, packaging submerged bodies, processing submerged evidence for prints and DNA, and more. This interactive workshop provides hands-on skill practical drills that include optional in-water experiences and is valuable for law enforcement, CSI’s, aquatic first responders, prosecutors, and anyone who would work ACAW cases. Non-swimmers welcome. Bring note-taking tools. Bathing suit optional. Pre-registration is required. Prerequisite: attend a past year or 2022 ACAW presentation.
Addressing the Needs of Sexual and Domestic Abuse Survivors with a Disability - Nancy Alterio, Timothy Grant, Julie Howley Westwater
Nancy Alterio, Timothy Grant, Julie Howley Westwater
Sexual and domestic abuse is a serious problem disproportionately affecting persons with disabilities, in particular, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The presenters will discuss the prevalence, signs, and impact of sexual and domestic abuse perpetrated against persons with disabilities. This workshop will demonstrate how law enforcement, adult protective services, forensic medical professionals can collaborate in a comprehensive manner.
Are We There Yet? Finding Best Practices for Responding to Domestic & Sexual Violence - Justin Boardman, Leah Lutz
Justin Boardman, Leah Lutz
There is no easy fix for preventing, responding to, and fighting the complex issues of domestic and sexual violence. Although many strides have been made, so much more needs to be done within the law enforcement, legal, and advocacy arenas. With so many people on the frontlines working tirelessly day in and day out, why haven’t collective efforts brought about more change? As responders in the criminal legal system, where have we come up short? This thought-provoking workshop is designed to discuss current challenges and inspire new ideas about the justice system’s handling of sexual and domestic violence.
Artificial Intelligence to Fight Human Trafficking - Rochelle Keyhan, Joseph Scaramucci
Rochelle Keyhan, Joseph Scaramucci
Human trafficking investigators and prosecutors know that victims do not typically cooperate with investigations with testifying being often traumatic, disincentivizing their participation in the process. Due to this knowledge, this workshop will provide human trafficking investigative best practices to ensure victims’ needs are met while aiming to conduct investigations and prosecutions of offenders without victim cooperation. Strategies for shifting investigations from “finding” victims to identifying offenders to ensure the victim is not necessary for investigation and prosecution will be discussed. Additionally, how to conduct human trafficking operations using minimal funding and manpower, leaning on technology, artificial intelligence, and both free and low-cost technical tools designed to support human trafficking investigators will also be discussed.
Assess Yourself Before You Assess Your Patient: How Implicit Bias Negatively Affects Healthcare Delivery & Patient Outcomes in Stigmatized Populations - Catherine Glenn, Kaeli Vandertulip
Implicit bias can manifest in the most well-intentioned individuals and unchecked bias can lead to the “isms” of society: Sexism, racism, ageism, ableism, etc., These biases can in turn affect interactions between groups that are different. This workshop will explore the ways that implicit bias shows up in places that everyone turns to for help or healing: The hospital, doctor’s office, or clinic. Using the medical power and control wheel, this workshop will show how healthcare provider implicit bias can negatively affect patient outcomes and perpetuate healthcare inequity. The presenters will illustrate situations in which bias can flare up and activate in the busy, chaotic, understaffed atmosphere of our nation’s emergency rooms and hospitals, and what can be done to prevent it. The workshop will also explore how a healthcare provider can identify their own individual biases and channel this knowledge into a powerful force in forging relationships with their patients.
Beyond Strangers in Bars: Understanding Drug Facilitated Domestic Violence & Supporting Survivors - Julie Owens, Allyson Cordoni, Winifred Eyeri, Rhonda Encinas
Julie Owens, Allyson Cordoni, Winifred Eyeri, Rhonda Encinas
Drug Facilitated Sexual Assault (DFSA) can disable unsuspecting victims, leaving them unable to protect themselves, recall the assault or identify their assailant. Stories of strangers spiking drinks in bars are common. Recently, however, incidents of Drug Facilitated Domestic Violence (DFDV) have been identified in which abusers used intoxicating substances to incapacitate, abuse, and/or sexually assault their partners. Like DFSA perpetrators, DFDV offenders avoid identification and consequences because their victim was unconscious or semi-conscious and experienced something resembling post-surgery amnesia. Confused and distressed, victims have no details or perpetrator to report, and typically avoid or delay seeking medical attention or law enforcement assistance. In this workshop, domestic violence advocates will describe DFDV, its symptoms, its impact on victims, common incapacitating substances, how to screen and support survivors, share case examples and resources. Additionally, a courageous advocate who survived six years of daily DFDV by her abusive ex-husband will share her experience.
Breaking Down Silos: A Collaborative Response to Challenging Cases - Khara Breeden, Micala Clark, Shamika Kelley, Brookley Torres
Khara Breeden, Micala Clark, Shamika Kelley, Brookley Torres
The victimization of women manifests in a variety of forms to include human trafficking, sexual assault, and domestic violence with strangulation. The complex intricacies of these crimes become challenging cases for investigators and especially for prosecutors. Walking through cases from community partner perspectives enriches communication and collaboration between support agencies, which ultimately improves victim support and case outcomes. The presenter will define these challenges from the lens of different community partners and the successful tactics and solid alliances needed to overcome these challenges.
Breaking Point: Agency Culture & Gender-Based Violence - Robert Frechette
Responses to gender-based violence (GBV) in law enforcement, social services, and healthcare has come a long way. However, due to COVID, staffing shortages, political struggles, and other challenges have led many people to reach their breaking points. One disturbing trend in some organizations has been the decrease in required documentation and/or procedures when working cases. Some police agencies have begun to remove full report requirements in so-called “verbal domestic violence” cases and switch to dispatch log notes that are not comprehensive. Additionally, agencies have been hesitant to adopt new best practices for fear of further burdening overworked staff. Some strained healthcare clinicians have resorted to just clicking the boxes in the electronic medical records rather than writing detailed supplemental narratives when dealing with crime victims. This workshop is designed to examine the evolution of agency culture around GBV and its challenges, and strategies for improving the efficiency of agency services.
Call Me Crazy: The Role of Fear & Survival in Criminal Justice - Kelsey McKay
Violence, abuse and trauma change how a woman communicates to the world. Traditionally, the criminal legal system identifies issues such as addiction, inconsistent statements, delayed reporting or other problematic victim behavior as a challenge to the credibility of the case. The definition of a “credible victim,” in the legal system is challenged by the complex reality of abusive dynamics, and without proper understanding, are set up to fail. As a result, valuable evidence of fear and survival is never documented and can be misinterpreted by practitioners and exploited by perpetrators. By calling her crazy, perpetrators can destroy the credibility of even the most ideal victim. With a new lens, practitioners can learn to overcome these challenges and turn them into convictions. However, if properly understood, evidence of survival can be translated into valuable evidence.
CASE STUDY: The Case of Albert Ayala & Why Every Sexual Assault Kit Must Be Tested - Leighton D’Antoni, Amy Derrick, Daniel Flannery, Angela Williamson
Leighton D’Antoni, Amy Derrick, Rachel Lovell, Angela Williamson
Albert Ayala raped women of all ages, races, strangers, women he knew, and even women with whom he was in a relationship. Ultimately, Ayala was convicted of aggravated sexual assault and received a life sentence. However, the forgotten tragedy and lesson learned in the Albert Ayala case is that if law enforcement had tested the sexual assault kit of his former girlfriend, Ayala would have been identified years before he continued to rape multiple other women. Had police tested her kit, the DNA would have matched other unsolved aggravated sexual assault cases where the sexual assaults kits had been tested. Instead, Ayala ended up pleading guilty to a reduced charge of misdemeanor assault and was free to continue committing aggravated sexual assaults. This case study will highlight the negative butterfly effects from failing to test the sexual assault kits in known offender and domestic violence cases.
Centering Rural Needs: Institute for Coordinated Community Response - Brooke Meyer
The Institute for Coordinated Community Response is a program of CCAW that works alongside rural communities to improve their collaborative, systemic responses to domestic violence. This lunch session will provide an overview of how ICCR can support your rural community, from training, to customized technical assistance, to resource provision.
Centering Survivors Across the Spectrum of Gun Violence Against Women - Crystal Turner, Chelsea Ocon, Michael-Sean Spence, Paige Tetens
Crystal Turner, Chelsea Ocon, Michael-Sean Spence, Paige Tetens
Gun violence against women is a complex and multifaceted issue, ranging from intimate partner violence, to hate-motivated violence, to intimidation and coercion with a gun. The trauma that results from these situations can also be extensive, affecting the children who witness or live with it and the family members, coworkers and law enforcement who respond to it. Many survivors do not only face bereavement and grief, but often financial barriers, stigmatization, and profound challenges accessing the critical services they need. This session will explore why survivor-centered approaches are crucial when implementing strategies that address intimate partner violence. After a survivor shares her lived experience, presenters will share original research on the state of violence against women —including IPV, misogynist violence, and the lingering impacts of being targeted with a gun — as well as the most effective approaches for national and community-based organizations to implement survivor-centered approaches to IPV prevention.
Challenges & Strides: Exploring the Army’s Special Victims’ Counsel Program - Carol A. Brewer
Carol A. Brewer
Violence, abuse and trauma change how a woman communicates to the world. Traditionally, the criminal legal system identifies issues such as addiction, inconsistent statements, delayed reporting or other problematic victim behavior as a challenge to the credibility of the case. The definition of a “credible victim,” in the legal system is challenged by the complex reality of abusive dynamics, and without proper understanding, are set up to fail. As a result, valuable evidence of fear and survival is never documented and can be misinterpreted by practitioners and exploited by perpetrators. By calling her crazy, perpetrators can destroy the credibility of even the most ideal victim. With a new lens, practitioners can learn to overcome these challenges and turn them into convictions. However, if properly understood, evidence of survival can be translated into valuable evidence.
Chances Are...You WILL Be a Victim: The Future of Elder Abuse (Lunch Session) - Julie Krawczyk
One in 10 adults will be a victim of elder financial exploitation or other forms of abuse. This lunch session is for anyone with a pulse! It is designed to address the progressive types of elder abuse, focusing on the fastest growing form of abuse: Financial abuse. The presenter will discuss the abuse of today, the indicators of financial abuse that can determine other types of abuse, futuristic types of abuse, and resources available to assist in preventing and reducing elder abuse.
Collaborative & Multidisciplinary Approach to Combat Human Trafficking - Ashlee Lucas, Guy Collins
Ashley Lucas, Guy Collins
According to the Office of Justice Programs, it is impossible for any single agency or organization to respond comprehensively to the problem of human trafficking. The most effective, coordinated, and efficient problem-solving efforts involve multi-disciplinary and collaborative tactics. In 2019 and 2020, the Mississippi Legislature passed bills integral to human trafficking intelligence. Subsequently, the Mississippi Human Trafficking Council (MHTC) was formed. Within a victim-centered, collaborative, and multidisciplinary model, the MHTC concentrates on prevention, protection, and prosecution as it relates to all forms of domestic and international human trafficking to include commercial sex trafficking and labor trafficking. The presenters will describe the establishment of the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation Human Trafficking Special Victim’s Unit and their role in responding to, investigating, collaborating with victim’s services, and assisting victims with the legal system. An overview of the creation of the Mississippi Human Trafficking Council goals, objectives, purposes, and updates will also be discussed.
COMPUTER LAB: Conducting Offender-Focused Human Trafficking Operations to Identify Trafficking Victims - Joseph Scaramucci
The trafficking of individuals for either labor or sex can result in not only horrible physical damage but typically, long-lasting psychological destruction as well. Therefore, it is imperative that human trafficking investigators fully understand the complicated mental consequences of trafficking by offering victim–centered, offender–focused investigations to ensure the victim’s needs are met. The presenter will discuss the stages of victimization, causes of victimization, trauma in the brain, learned helplessness, and how to approach these investigations with the best interest of the victim’s overall wellbeing in mind. The investigation and prosecution of human trafficking operations, with or without victim cooperation, through minimal funding and manpower, will also be explored.
Cracking the Code: Recognizing the Different Motives of Those Who Batter (Pt. 1 & 2) - Dorthy Stucky Halley, Steven Halley
Dorthy Stucky Halley, Steven Halley
The commonality among batterers, their desire to dominate and control, has been understood for a long time. Unfortunately, their differences have eluded researchers and professionals for years, making it difficult to provide effective responses. However, the presenters of this workshop have “cracked the code,” providing knowledge about the different types of batterers who have different motives, display different behaviors, and present different dangers to their victim and to their community. This workshop will provide practical information that unlocks the mystery of domestic violence in an effort to prompt change and enhance agency response.
Creating a Consent Culture: How Media Perpetuates Sexual Violence - Sarah Berlanga
Media helps us understand the world around us, and in pursuit of this insatiable knowledge, the average American child spends approximately 6 hours, and the average American adult spends approximately 12 hours, per day, consuming media. The media also attempts to shape the way in which we define women, with those definitions exacerbating rape culture and discrimination. The presenter will use an intersectional approach to discuss how media assists in perpetuating gender norms and stereotypes that lead to sexual violence, especially toward people of racial and sexual minorities. This workshop will also define primary prevention, and explain how media literacy can be used to change attitudes that perpetuate sexual violence.
Crime Scene Investigation: A Deep Dive (Interactive) - Ray Goins, Ronnie Johnson
Ray Goins, Ronnie Johnson
This interactive workshop is designed to give attendees a “hands–on” experience with the intimate partner incident. Attendees will “investigate” a “crime scene”, interview the victim, suspect, a child witness and a third–party witness. Attendees fill the roles of investigating officer, advocate, and support for the victim. Interaction with other attendees, role players, and presenters will give attendees a deeper insight of the overall response to the intimate partner violence incident.
The Crisis of Indifference: Missing & Unidentified Women in the U.S. - Thomas McAndrew, Christopher McMullin
Thomas McAndrew, Christopher McMullin
Statistics indicate a crisis of historic proportions that continues to be ignored. By some estimates there are more than 40,000 unidentified bodies in the U.S. In 2020 alone, almost 270,000 girls and women were reported missing. Additionally, homicide cases, where victims are unknown, are the hardest cases to solve. Despite these staggering numbers, the criminal justice system, law enforcement, coroners, medical examiners, politicians, and the media continue to fail at properly addressing these issues leaving much more work to be done to identify victims, pursue their killers, and track down missing persons. In this workshop, the presenters will provide a framework for locating unidentified victims who have long been forgotten. Attendees will be provided with strategies to bring these cases up to contemporary standards. Case studies will be included in the workshop that demonstrate the failures of the system and how those failures can instead be turned into a success.
The Critical Intersection of Sex Trafficking & Murdered & Missing Indigenous Relatives - Nicole Matthews, Jolene Engelking
Nicole Matthews, Jolene Engelking
The dangers of sex trafficking are often exacerbated by the long-existing barriers of invisibility and jurisdictional barriers that traffickers count on when committing violent crimes. The presenters will explore the critical intersection of sex trafficking and murdered and missing Indigenous relatives and offer support and training around the historical connections of Tribal cultures, impacts, policy, sovereignty, and traditional values, along with the emerging issues in contemporary sex trafficking. These connections are tightly woven between victims/survivors, their communities and families. The presenters will discuss grassroots promising practices to understand, intervene, prevent, and support those most at risk. Comprehensive responses can impede upon the endemic of Missing and/or Murdered Indigenous people in both online and in real life. This workshop will be specialized towards Native advocates, law enforcement, legal representatives, medical personnel, and social services.
CASE STUDY: Dangerous Consequences: When a “Good” Plea Bargain in a Criminal Case Unintentionally Creates a Bad Outcome in a Family Law Matter - Rachel Elkin, Sara Barnett
Rachel Elkin, Sara Barnett
Criminal prosecutors are tasked with protecting the public and seeking justice against an offender through the criminal justice system. However, prosecutors are not always able to consider how the deals they reach or the pleas that they accept can have serious ramifications on a victim’s ability to get justice through the family court system against the same abuser. This case study will walk through one Genesis client’s case and examine how an abuser, arrested at least four times for assault family violence, was able to successfully gain full custody of two little boys and paint the victim as a dangerous abuser, and how the Genesis Legal Team was able to get the children back to safety with their mother.
Data-Informed Response to Intimate Partner Homicide in Rural Communities (Lunch Session) - Mikisha Hooper, Leila Wood
Mikisha Hooper, Leila Wood
Drawing upon needs identified through recent research on the response to intimate partner violence in Texas communities, the presenters will share four key issues that emerged as unique needs and strengths of rural community responses to domestic violence. This lunch session will provide a summary of data from statewide reviews of accessibility and needs for services for domestic violence, annual domestic violence fatality reviews, an evaluation of children’s services, and a survey of the needs of older survivors. The presenters will discuss how rural communities can mobilize to address limited physical presence of service providers, justice access issues, mobile advocacy models, and economic resource needs in rural areas.
Demystifying & Humanizing the Title IX Process - Michelle Miller
The Title IX process can be daunting not only for students but for advocates, law enforcement, and even attorneys. While most behaviors addressed by Title IX are also violations of criminal law, the standard of evidence and the administrative process used by college campuses are very different than that of a criminal proceeding and vary from campus to campus. This workshop is intended to provide an overview of what to expect when supporting a student or working through a Title IX case. It will also cover common terminology, overview the investigation and adjudication process, explain the unique role Title IX and Student Conduct play in addressing sexual misconduct on college campuses, and how to coordinate collaboration across campus with local and campus law enforcement. In addition to discussing the process, this workshop will address the impartial role that Title IX Offices play and how they can provide empathy and support while remaining a neutral third party as required by federal law.
Determining Predominant Aggressor & Self-Defense: Video Screening & Discussion - Denise Jones, Dave Thomas, Brooke Meyer
Denise Jones, Dave Thomas, Brooke Meyer
Domestic violence calls are some of the most dangerous and complicated scenes that officers encounter. Responding officers must understand the context of these crimes and conduct thorough, evidence-based investigation to determine if self-defense was present, who acted as the predominant aggressor, and who should go to jail. Arresting the wrong party can have devastating consequences not only for the victim, but for the criminal justice system’s ability to hold the offender accountable. This workshop will present an on-demand roll call training series on determining predominant aggressor and self-defense on-scene, produced by the Institute for Coordinated Community Response in January 2022. To model how this workshop can be used for group trainings, the presenters will screen the six-part video series and facilitate a group discussion between parts.
CASE STUDY: A Devil in Disguise: The Deification of Brandon Sampson - Jessica Trevizo
Deification is defined as the action of making someone or something into a god; treating a mere mortal as someone godly. This case study will chronicle the search for a young woman whose lifeless body was discovered in the defendant’s garage, naked, wrapped in a blanket. During the course of the investigation, it became clear that the defendant was not just a heartless murderer but also a “gorilla” pimp who considered himself a god and referred to himself as the “Messiah.” The mother of two young daughters had suffered blunt force trauma to her head and two gunshots to her body. The presenter will demonstrate the evolution of a trafficker who thought himself to be a god and whose abusive behavior escalated over the years, empowered by a systematic breakdown in the criminal justice system that led him to believe he was untouchable.
Digital Abuse in the Intimate Partner Violence Setting - Kathryn Marsh
Kathryn Marsh, Melissa Hoppmeyer
As innovation in technology continues to reach meteoric heights, the criminal justice system must remain on the cutting edge in order to combat cybercrimes, specifically ones that sexually exploit women and children or are used to as a means of control in domestic violence situations. This workshop helps to identify digital or tech-facilitated abuse within the intimate partner violence setting. The presenters will present real case investigations, many of which involve stalking, hidden cameras, non-consensual porn, and cyber-bullying. Through these case studies, the presenters will highlight effective investigative techniques and partnerships with the tech world. This workshop will also highlight the difficulties in the investigation and prosecution of this type of crime due to antiquated or out-of-date laws and will explore possible state and federal laws that are applicable.
CASE STUDY: Diligence, Digital Evidence, & Dumb Luck: The Investigation of Brenton Wade Richmond - John Trenary
On February 7th, 2019, Brenton Richmond murdered Tammy Hopper and Erik Jacobs after sneaking into Tammy’s house. Richmond had been employed as a police officer until 2002 when he threatened his estranged wife with a pistol and engaged in an armed standoff with SWAT. Richmond used his law enforcement training and experience to attempt to thwart investigative efforts, destroying evidence, creating alibis, and voluntarily providing investigators with little, tangible evidentiary information. Richmond’s failure to consider digital evidence when he committed his crimes provided a treasure chest of investigative information. Surveillance videos, smart phones, social media evidence, Wi-Fi networking information, wearable devices, Internet history, lottery records and more were gathered and analyzed. The ongoing review of evidence to develop new information from digital data became a driving theme throughout the investigation. This case study will showcase digital innovation by providing practical learning points and relatable take-aways for current and future investigations.
Domestic Violence & the Magistrate: Survivor Rights & Due Process - Stuti Patel
The journey for victims of violent crime is often arduous and burdensome with survivors having to navigate advocacy services, legal landscapes, and court proceedings all while attempting to work, care for children, and/or receive psychological or physical treatment. Due to these many challenges, it is imperative that victims (and the advocates who assist them) are both apprised of and notified about what their rights are at the scene of the crime, at the court, during the pendency of the case, and post-disposition of the case. The presenter will cover laws regarding protective orders and bond conditions such as firearm possession and contact with the complainant, while ensuring the defendant’s due process rights.
Domestic Violence in South Asian & Muslim Communities - Heena Khan
This workshop is designed to discuss the acculturation and cultural dynamics that are important to understand when providing services to South Asian victims and families. The presenter will share her unique counseling experience and educate attendees on how to attune themselves to the unique needs of South Asian and Muslim survivors and how to work effectively, utilizing trauma-informed and culturally competent practices while working with this particular population.
Double Whammy: The Overlap of Sexual Abuse & Domestic Violence & What Professionals Need to Know - Scott Hampton
Increasingly we are becoming aware that our efforts to address sexual assault with domestic violence victims are falling short, with potentially disastrous results. For example, model protocols for strangulation fail to screen for sexual abuse, despite the high and often lethal co-occurrence. First responders who conduct domestic violence risk assessment do not routinely ask about sexual assault despite research that shows that women who experience forced sex are 7.6x more likely to die than other women. The reason sounds all too familiar, because asking the question makes people uncomfortable. This workshop is designed to explain the relationship between domestic violence and sexual assault, offer a rationale for increased screening, assessment and intervention, and discuss how to engage in a conversation with both victims and perpetrators about their experience of sexual assault in the context of an intimate relationship.
Dropping the No-Drop: Is Doing Away with No Drop the Best for Victims? (Lunch Session) - Mark Matsusaka
The City of Honolulu is about to join a number of large city and counties that have done away with a rigid no-drop domestic violence policy, but is it a better approach to prosecuting domestic violence cases? Did no-drop prosecution policies increase the rate of successful prosecution and the number of convictions? Does it increase guilty pleas and reduce the number of dismissals? Does it really provide more safety and security for the victim/survivor? This lunch session will examine the immediate and long-term effects of doing away with the prosecution of domestic violence cases and the possible successes and repercussions that can impact victims. Validating victims/survivors’ voices and choices, listening to the victim/survivor desires, providing support, and autonomy will also be discussed.
Effective Communication with Reports in Gender-Based Violence Cases - Robert Frechette
Gender-based violence is a pattern crime requiring careful documentation with reports too often written with minimal details and with readers left with many questions. This inefficient documentation is particularly challenging for prosecutors who often read the case for the first time, moments before a bail hearing or arraignment begins. Moreover, victims can read these reports and feel re-victimized by the language, or media could read these reports and feel empowered to possibly report inaccurate or insensitive information. Communication with reports is an artform that holds more power than many people realize. The presenter will examine how law enforcement, medical personnel, and other official reports have the potential to make or break a case. This workshop will also explore language that can better paint a picture of the facts for the reader and ways in which officer documentation has the ability to empower or re-victimize victims of gender-based crimes.
Empathy-Based Interrogation - Nancy Oglesby, Mark MacKizer, Mike Milnor
Nancy Oglesby, Mark MacKizer, Mike Milnor
Empathy-based interrogation (EBI) is an interrogation philosophy that utilizes a science-based, personality-focused approach in a non-confrontational interview process designed to gain accurate information and induce problem-solving by keeping subjects talking. EBI is supported by scientific research on the use of interrogation in intelligence and criminal justice communities. The EBI philosophy is grounded in empathy, which facilitates an understanding of the interviewee’s point of view, motivation for committing the offense, and the incentive for sharing accurate information with the interviewer. Once obtained, information can then be corroborated or refuted through the investigative process, reinforcing the idea that a confession is not the sole focus of a proper interview, but instead a by-product. This workshop is an overview and introduction to EBI in an effort to share best practices for eliciting comprehensive and accurate information from a subject are non-confrontational, rapport-based, information-gathering interviewing and interrogation methods.
Expanding the Understanding of Sexual Violence Trauma for Both Survivors & Service Providers (Lunch Session) - Chelsea Davis
While the societal conversation around trauma has advanced by leaps and bounds in previous years, there are still gaps in understanding, particularly surrounding survivors of sexual violence. This lunch session will expand attendees’ views of sexual violence as a form of trauma, impacting the long-term health and wellbeing of survivors and the communities in which they live. The presenter will explore how the professionals who support victims of sexual violence are impacted by the vicarious trauma of this work. Strategies for service providers to apply strengths-based perspectives and a trauma-informed and trauma-responsive lens will be discussed, as well as how to address their own secondhand trauma.
Exploring the Internet of Things & Emerging Technologies: Apps, Nests, & Tiles - Audace Garnett
Are you stumped by smart devices? Perplexed by Bluetooth trackers? This workshop is for you! Emerging technologies and the Internet of Things (IoT) has rapidly and drastically changed how people live their lives and interact. Offenders are increasingly using these technologies as tools of abuse, especially for offenses involving domestic and sexual violence and stalking. This workshop will explore the ways in which newer technologies, such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and next generation tracking devices, are misused by abusers to track and surveille survivors. The presenter will also discuss privacy and safety considerations when working with survivors of technology abuse. At the end of this workshop, attendees will have a better understanding of newer technologies and how to better assist survivors experiencing technology abuse.
Exposing the Batterer’s Playbook - Scott Hampton, Kelsey McKay
Scott Hampton, Kelsey McKay
Abusers play by a set of rules where they identify and access a victim, abuse a victim and avoid accountability for their acts. Without a guide of their own, victims are often left to navigate and survive the confusing world they live in. A perpetrator’s most effective defense is to shift the focus away from the crime and their actions, and redirect the blame on the victim. This workshop reveals the manipulation that often occurs beneath the surface of cases that involve intimate partners and focuses on the agenda, strategy, and tactics employed by domestic abusers. By translating a victim’s actions through the lens of a batterer’s agenda, attendees will learn to reframe their cases and see victims behavior as a response to ongoing abuse. The presenters will explore the what, why and how of their actions through the viewpoint of the abusers, victims/survivors and those charged with helping them.
Exposing What’s Concealed: IPV & Firearms - John Guard, Heidi Bonner
John Guard, Heidi Bonner
The U.S. has recently experienced at least four years of increases in intimate partner violence (IPV) homicide. Research has repeatedly shown that the presence of a firearm in an intimate partner relationship, particularly those unlawfully possessed, substantially increases the risk of homicide. The presence of firearms in IPV relationships can also allow abusers to exert harmful coercive control over their partners. Therefore, it is important to not only reduce the presence of firearms in abusive intimate partner relationships, but also to reduce the lethality risk for law enforcement officers who respond to domestic violence calls. This workshop will provide an overview of federal firearms laws, offering the opportunity for attendees to acquire a firm understanding of law enforcement authority to enforce federal gun laws. The presenters will discuss information on promising legislation and practices concerning firearms seizures in the context of IPV, referrals to BATF, and working joint proactive investigations.
CASE STUDY: A Fight for Justice: A Pakistan Story - Zoe Richards
Being at the epicenter of South Asia with a rich history, Pakistan has been in the news of late for all the wrong reasons; from a fledgling democracy on the cusp of military rule, to the nexus with 9/11 and terrorism and most importantly for this conference – Pakistan’s ranking of 153rd out of 156 countries on gender inequality. Due to the conflation of Islamic laws with the criminal justice system, Pakistan is operating in a structure where women’s rights come last. However, despite these challenges, there are everyday heroes in our midst – prosecutors and judges from Pakistan who not only work on cases involving crimes against women but are also committed to sharing their insights, learning, experiences, and the unique conditions of Pakistan – with the world. This case study will highlight the challenges and triumphs involved in the fight for justice related to two Pakistani prosecutorial cases.
Fighting for Immigrant Survivors of Domestic Violence: The Challenges of Representing Asylum Seekers - Ann Marie Dooley, Julie Owens
Ann Marie Dooley, Julie Owens
Domestic violence is a horrific phenomenon that plagues millions of women globally. Barriers to services and legal relief are two of the primary obstacles that victims and survivors encounter when trying to reach safety or healing. These impediments are exacerbated for immigrant survivors who are not only fleeing an abusive relationship but quite possibly a violent community and an even more vicious regime. This workshop will discuss the challenges that immigrant survivors of domestic violence face when seeking asylum in the U.S., the legal hurdles that both survivors and attorneys face, the invaluable assistance of expert witnesses, and ways to best advocate for immigrant asylum seekers.
Fighting for Your Rights: Reproductive Coercion, Control, & Interpersonal Violence - Laramie Gorbett
When breaking down the essentials of gender-based violence, power, and control are the highest motivating factors of domestic and/or sexual violence and human trafficking. Reproductive control is a subset of domestic violence, and is yet another malicious tool for abusers to exert power and control. It is important for anti–violence organizations to understand the need for reproductive justice in order to promote social justice and operate from a trauma-informed and a survivor-centered framework. This lunch session will examine the root causes of gender-based violence, discuss the intersectional nature of reproductive justice, and explore how service providers can facilitate information, training, and access to services for survivors. The presenter will also discuss legislation, including SB 4, and the potential implications for advocates and direct service organizations.
Financial Abuse: The Cost of Control (Lunch Session) - Ruth Guerreiro
Studies show that financial abuse happens in 94-99% of abusive intimate partner relationships. Yet it is the least understood form of abuse. This workshop will identify the numerous tactics that fall into five main categories of financial abuse, including coerced debt and financial fraud. The presenter will discuss the many ways financial abuse impacts a woman while she is in the abusive relationship as well as the long-lasting effects it can have after leaving the abusive relationship. The presenter will also explore ways advocates, attorneys, and other professionals can help support a survivor of financial abuse.
First Responding Officers: The Law Enforcement Response to Sexual Violence Calls - Kenny Smith
The first interaction between a survivor of sexual violence and the first responding law enforcement officer is critical in establishing a foundation for the investigative process and assisting the survivor on their path to healing. During this workshop, attendees will be taught the steps of taking a victim-centered approach in their interactions with the survivor. Whether responding to a hospital room or taking a report at your agency, knowing what information is needed and how to facilitate these crucial and traumatic conversations with survivors can dramatically increase the success rate of investigators and the criminal prosecution process.
Forensic Healthcare Examiners: A New Focus that Extends Care Beyond Military Sexual Assault - Allyson Cordoni, Cynthia Ferguson, Joy Hardt
Allyson Cordoni, Cynthia Ferguson, Joy Hardt
Traditionally, forensic health care providers, or in the military system, sexual assault medical forensic examiner have provided comprehensive forensic health care to persons who have experienced sexual assault. Within the past year, each of the separate service military health components have merged to become the Defense Health Agency (DHA), an entity committed to providing superior, comprehensive, health care services to individuals who serve in the U.S. Armed Services. The DHA serves as the umbrella in which all branches of medical military services fall under and has developed a forensic healthcare regulation that includes updated forms and instructions to accompany those forms encompassing multiple forms of violence on a person. The presenter will discuss the individual Medical Treatment Centers (MTF’s), its 24/7 forensic healthcare services, case management of forensic patients, dedicated forensically trained follow-up providers, and regional oversight by experienced forensic providers.
Four Pounds of Pressure: From a Trigger’s Threat to a Survivor’s Triumph - Mark Dungy, Christina Galewski, Danielle Leukam, Kate Loken
Mark Dungy, Christina Galewski, Danielle Leukam, Kate Loken
In the early morning hours of November 18, 2018, a woman woke up to a noise at the end of her bed, was held at gunpoint and raped repeatedly for five hours while her three-year-old son slept in the next room. The presenters, to include survivor Danielle Leukam, will recount the events, sharing what victims and survivors go through during an assault as well as the assault’s aftermath. The workshop will discuss lessons learned from law enforcement’s investigation and criminal court proceedings. The presenters will address survivor perspectives from the lens of law enforcement collaboration, rape kit examination, and victim advocacy.
From Jail, to Bail, to Sale: Trafficking within the Criminal Justice System - Jane Anderson, Nicole Bell
Jane Anderson, Nicole Bell
Traffickers target individuals who are less likely to report their exploitation to law enforcement. As a result, people who have a criminal record, are under court supervision, or otherwise subject to the authority of the criminal justice system are at higher risk for exploitation. Individuals who also struggle with substance use disorders are especially vulnerable to coercion. This workshop will identify trafficking schemes that involve recruitment from local jails and prisons, as well as from court-sanctioned treatment programs as an alternative to incarceration. The presenter will focus on strategies to address victim safety concerns and help triers of fact understand the unique circumstances that led to a victim’s exploitation. Additionally, the presenter will discuss the importance trauma-informed practices and a coordinated response that includes healthcare providers and transitional housing.
From Ruin to Reinvention: The Resilience of a Survivor & the Importance of Services (Lunch Session) - Nichole Myles
Nichole Myles, a domestic violence survivor, lost her home, career, and finances with three children in tow. Despite odds that would put Myles’ family on a negative path, she managed to rebuild their lives and, not only survive the ordeal, but find ways to thrive and reinvent. Her outcomes may beg the question, “Why do some survivors thrive while others struggle?” This lunch session will examine resilience and post-traumatic growth from the view of the survivor who will share her story of domestic violence, itinerant shelter, homelessness survival, and caring for a newborn during extreme stress. The presenter will examine critical components of creating a resilient narrative, strength-based language, and post-traumatic growth opportunities that providers can have in place to give victims and survivors the best shot at hope.
Getting to “Guilty”: Guiding the Jury’s Response to the Evidence - Patti Powers
After being thrust into an unfamiliar role in a complex system that is often equally unfamiliar, jurors in sexual assault cases face the daunting task of reaching a just verdict for a crime that is shrouded in misconceptions. In this foreign terrain, prosecutors serve as a trusted guide, pointing out familiar landmarks of personal experience and presenting the witnesses and other evidence in a manner that makes them both understandable and relatable. By assisting jurors in forging personal connections to the evidence, the prosecutor can remove any obstacles that might otherwise block the path to a just finding of guilt. This workshop will suggest ways to focus the jury’s attention on the evidence in a manner that accurately conveys the reality of sexual assault and assists jurors in rendering a fair and just verdict, beginning with jury selection and continuing through opening statement, presentation of evidence, and summation.
Happy Lives & Healthy Careers: Dealing with Traumatic Investigations - Matthew Hagan
After a particularly horrific homicide investigation, in 2017, Matt Hagan’s life began spiraling out of control. He was diagnosed with P.T.S.D., major depressive disorder and anxiety. Mr. Hagan sought help, and turned his life back around, making it his mission to break down the stigma of asking for and seeking out mental health treatment. With a long career in law enforcement, this workshop will offer ways to get help and will be especially relevant to law enforcement personnel who are confronted daily with trauma as they engage in traumatic police work and investigations.
The Healing & Liberating Power of Religion in Intimate Partner Violence - Tawana Davis
Sermons, the preaching moment, talks, and expounding on the text should be liberating – freeing one from that which is oppressive, dehumanizing, and abusive. Rev. Dr. Renita Weems states in her book Battered Love, “Reading texts that rationalize violence, that eroticize violence, and that take for granted one group’s power to destroy another should never be taken lightly.” Abuse should not be theologically justifiable, shameful, ignored, or victim-blaming. During this workshop, the presenter will address intimate partner violence and create a space for individual, congregational, and communal healing.
Healing the Healers: Encouraging and Preparing Faith Leaders to Respond - Kirsten Kelly
Faith leaders are often the first point of contact for a victim reaching out for help. Knowing this, faith communities should operate as places of safety, hope and healing. Do faith leaders know what to do when someone who is experiencing abuse comes to them? This workshop features a panel discussion with highlights from a video series that provides insights and strategies for care, along with practical tools to building a strong network of support in faith communities. Additionally, this workshop is designed to encourage and support faith leaders in creating safe and trusted communities for victims and survivors. Faith leader-survivors of domestic violence and faith leaders will also be featured. Navigating complex issues and building strong community liaisons with advocates and law enforcement to ultimately build a strong and safe network of support between faith and secular resources will be discussed.
“Here’s the Takeaway”: Exploring Domestic Violence & Firearms Divesture - Valerie Martinez-Jordan, Sunny Funk
Valerie Martinez-Jordan, Sunny Funk
Louisiana has been identified as a state that often ranks in the top three for femicide. In a small town in Southern Louisiana, another alarming pattern discovered is the number of abusers and murderers of women who own guns. Research has shown that firearms in the hands of abusers significantly increases the lethality risks for domestic abuse victims. To curb these trends, the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office initiated a trailblazing program to divest firearms from offenders and improve safety measures for victims and survivors. The presenters will describe the firearms divesture program, its legislation, and how it became a model program for removing firearms from the hands of prohibited possessors. Program development for agency implementation will also be discussed.
CASE STUDY: Hidden in Plain Sight: The Operation of Residential Brothels - George Duarte, Jeffrey Richards
George Duarte, Jeffrey Richards
In response to a Providence citizen expressing concern about brothels operating within residential neighborhoods amongst businesses, churches, and schools, the Providence Police Department’s Special Victims Unit conducted a long-term undercover investigation. Subsequently, Detective George Duarte, assigned to the Organized Crime and Intelligence Unit, began to focus on a husband-and-wife duo who detectives later learned were responsible for operating a large-scale sex smuggling ring which stretched from the city of Providence to the borders of the Rio Grande. This case study will explore what was found to be a very organized and sophisticated “family business” who used a scheme of real estate transactions to buy and sell homes and businesses that would be used as indoor brothels. Topics such as counter-surveillance and police detection networks by the offenders and investigative surveillance technology by crime intelligence units will also be discussed.
Hitting the Target: Domestic Abuse Response Team (D.A.R.T.): An Innovative Coordinated Community Response to Combat Domestic Violence - Carvana Cloud, Julie Pleasant
Carvana Cloud, Julie Pleasant
Domestic violence is a public health crisis with uncompromising consequences for thousands of Houston residents, families, and communities every year. In addition to the physical impact, domestic violence breeds fear, isolation, and a sense of loss of control, which sadly contributes to the loss of life for hundreds of victims across the U.S. Designed to facilitate offender accountability and survivor restoration, Houston Police Department Lt. Julie Pleasant and Attorney Carvana Cloud founded Houston’s Domestic Abuse Response Team (D.A.R.T.), a relational policing crisis intervention model designed to identify high risk cases in order to reduce domestic violence homicides. The presenters will introduce the ways that D.A.R.T. helps to ease victims’ navigation of the criminal justice and social service systems designed to facilitate survivor safety and restoration after formally reporting domestic violence to law enforcement.
CASE STUDY: House of Horrors: The Case of Immanuel Humes - Thea Zumwalt
The Humes Sisters were shielded from CPS by homeschooling until the day their father beat their 5–year–old non-verbal sister to death. It was then that the truth of house of horrors came to light. This case study will dive into the State of Maryland v. Immanuel Humes and Jasmine Stevenson, both of whom were charged with neglect, child abuse, and murder for the maltreatment and neglect of their children. The presenters will review the case investigation and ultimate decisions to charge both of the parents, as well as how domestic violence plays a role in child abuse and how Ms. Stevenson’s abuse played a role in the neglect and abuse of her children. The case study will examine the discovery of the abuse and the decision to get Ms. Stevenson treatment rather than incarceration for her crimes.
Housing & Economic Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Domestic Violence Survivors in Texas (Lunch Session) - Barbie Brashear
The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented challenges with deep impacts to the safety, stability, and wellness of domestic violence survivors, a group already vulnerable to housing/economic instability and health disparities. This lunch session will focus on study findings about the impact of COVID-19 on domestic violence survivors’ housing and economic situations, and examine what remedies and policies participants reported improved safety and stability.
How to Effectively Communicate with Survivors & Increase Participation - Ruth Guerreiro, Jordyn Lawson
Ruth Guerreiro, Jordyn Lawson
Do you ever feel frustrated or confused by what a survivor says or does? In this workshop, attendees will discover how to use The Stages of Change as a guide in how to communicate with survivors, using trauma-informed language and interviewing skills. The presenters will discuss realistic goals and helpful techniques to create safety that can aid providers in being successful in their roles. The intended audience for this workshop is therapists, advocates, investigators, law enforcement, attorneys, prosecutors, nurses, and CPS personnel.
How to Gain the Trust of Survivors of Domestic Sex Trafficking - Katariina Rosenblatt
Traumatized survivors have lost their ability to trust due to the corruption of those in authority, traffickers, and the system (schools, foster care, law enforcement, detention centers). The presenter will discuss how to see the trafficking signs, speak survivor language, gain survivor trust, and eventually turn the tables on traffickers that can lead to successful prosecutions. This workshop will review the mind control used by traffickers, reasons why survivors go back to their traffickers, and the tactics needed to help survivors become productive members of society. The presenter will share examples of survivor stories, as well as how law enforcement collaboration can act as a deterrent to future criminal activity and lead to the rebuilding of survivors’ trust.
How Not to Lose a SVU Case - Donna Kelly, Justin Boardman
Donna Kelly, Justin Boardman
Special Victims Unit (SVU) cases are challenging to investigate and prosecute. In this fast-paced, interactive workshop, a veteran SVU prosecutor and detective will share their experiences from a combined 40 years of handling thousands of SVU cases, also known as The School of Hard Knocks. The workshop’s focus will be to move beyond just obtaining and presenting facts to meet the elements of the crimes, to instead learning and presenting the victim’s experience in a new and powerful way. This approach not only makes cases impactful and persuasive, but also serves the equally important goal of helping victims heal. The presenters will use real case interviews and recordings of court testimony. Research on what juries consider persuasive and best practices by the National District Attorneys Association will be taught, with a concentration on practical ways to implement these standards in cases.
How to Prepare a Protective Order Case in Family Court - Rob Cañas
Protective orders in a divorce or child custody case can have ramifications beyond the obvious prohibition on further violence. Success or failure at the hearing can set the stage for further success or failure in other aspects of the case. Thus, witness and evidence preparation is key. A well-drafted protective order will anticipate issues and problems and give your clients the authority to keep themselves and their children safe. Additionally, to properly include firearm prohibition in your order, there is specific language that is required. This workshop will discuss how to prepare witnesses and evidence for a protective order hearing and considerations to consider when drafting a protective order for the court to adopt to include specific language is needed to properly include firearm prohibitions under federal law.
How Tribal Colleges & Universities Can Partner with Their Local Community-Based Advocates - Raquel DeHerrera
For many Tribal colleges and universities, having an on-campus advocate for sexual assault is not an option due to funding, physical space on campus, or a lack of other resources. Partnering with a local advocacy program is necessary so that Tribal students who have been sexually assaulted have access to the resources a Tribal advocate can offer. Tribal colleges and universities have specific organizational structures, as do community-based advocacy programs. Establishing a partnership with a community-based advocacy program can enhance both the Tribal community and university and community-based advocacy program’s services to victims of sexual assault.
INTERACTIVE: How to Work Aquatic Crimes Against Women Staged as Noncriminal Bathtub Deaths - Andrea Zaferes, Walt “Butch” Hendrick, Tiffany Lee, Thomas McAndrew
Andrea Zaferes, Walt “Butch” Hendrick, Tiffany Lee, Thomas McAndrew
Aquatic Crimes Against Women (ACAW) are often staged as noncriminal bathtub deaths. In this interactive workshop, attendees will work a bathtub homicide case as a patrol officer, detective, CSI, or death investigator, and learn how to document the victim’s body, critical scene evidence, and reporting party evidence. Skills will include photographing wet/damp evidence, interviewing suspects of ACAW, identifying important injury and postmortem physiology artifacts, and applying a practical investigative framework with a bathtub case investigation form that attendees can bring to their departments. Attendees will also interact with and interview the reporting-party husband to document important circumstantial evidence. Additionally, a circumstantial evidence homicide Senior State’s Attorney will teach attendees the legal pitfalls to avoid and proven ways to approach and work the scene for the most just jurisprudence outcome. The presenters will show the scene and case through the eyes of a prosecutor, judge, and jury. Bring note-taking tools, a camera, stopwatch, and clipboard. Pre-requisite: Attended a previous year or 2022 ACAW presentation. Must pre-register for this workshop.
“I Can’t Breathe!”: The Physiology of Respiration & Asphyxiation as It Relates to Victims of Abuse - Andrea Zaferes, Allyson Cordoni
Andrea Zaferes, Allyson Cordoni
Asphyxiation, such as drowning, strangulation, and suffocation, is a common cause of injury, abuse, noncriminal death, and homicide. Asphyxiation affects various populations, including sex and work-trafficked victims, those with physical challenges, victims of domestic violence, patients with particular illnesses/addictions, autoerotic and some BDSM practitioners, etc. Asphyxiation typically involves a diagnosis of exclusion, and relies heavily on circumstances to determine if asphyxiation occurred and if foul play may be involved. Lack of knowledge and insufficient investigations allow the perpetuation of asphyxiation misconceptions that facilitate the rough sex defense, cause and manner of death misdiagnoses, high risk behavior, missed criminal cases, and lack of appropriate medical care for victims. This workshop begins with a foundation of normal respiration physiology, followed by mechanisms, signs/symptoms, and pathophysiology of the 10 most common types of fatal and nonfatal asphyxiation. The presenters will also review research on asphyxiation accidents, hanging autoerotic, and suicide deaths.
Identifying & Investigating Strangulation & Asphyxiation Crimes - Kelsey McKay, Kimberly Orts
Kelsey McKay, Kimberly Orts
Research and legislation have recognized the gravity, lethality and danger of perpetrators who use strangulation and other forms of asphyxiation. Despite the seriousness and significance of this type of violence—they often go entirely unrecognized by first responders. These specialized cases require focused training to identify that an asphyxiation has occurred, dedicated attention on evidence collection and standardized practice to create a predictable and reliable response. Through the lens of a former patrol officer, experienced detective, and former prosecutor attendees will be taught how to overcome common challenges that confront these cases before they even begin. With team collaboration, attendees will be exposed to the potential to improve current practice and hold these dangerous offenders accountable.
“I Didn't Know I Had Access to That Kind of Information!” The Nuts & Bolts of Nlets - Teri Harsin
What are the resources available to law enforcement and where does that information come from? How do officers and investigators access that information? As it relates to crimes against women, how important would it be to know whether a person has a concealed permit, or whether a person is a registered sex offender in another state? What if that person is from another country and has an active warrant for domestic crimes in their home country? The presenter will explain how Nlets and NCIC are different and provide examples of the various resources accessible via Nlets. The presenter will also provide real-life scenarios where Nlets transactions were used to assist in gaining invaluable information to help law enforcement, public safety, and criminal justice professionals.
The Impact of Digital Abuse: A Day in the Life of a Survivor - Audace Garnett
Understanding the impact that technology abuse can have is critical when working with survivors. This interactive session will give attendees an opportunity to better understand the experiences of tech abuse survivors. A simulated video experience will help attendees consider the complex and challenging situations that this type of abuse can create, and the impossible decisions and choices survivors often face. The presenters will explore how to take context into account in a case involving intimate partner violence through a game of deciphering emoji conversations, with a discussion of why context matters for survivors of tech abuse.
Implicit Bias & Intersectionality: It’s a Human Condition - Myra Strand
A silent, yet very powerful and sinister bias looms in the perspectives of all human beings called implicit bias, which is often subconscious and shifts the way in which we interact with the world around us. The predisposition of bias creates a foundation from which we interpret experience to include the many scripts we use to manifest our views and judgements about violence. The manner in which victims experience the criminal justice system and other response systems is unquestionably and often negatively impacted of bias. Thus, analyzing “justice” through the lens of implicit or explicit bias will help us better understand how victims are impacted by prejudice. This workshop will go beyond the typical analysis of “gender bias” to assert that the gender experience is inherently intertwined with race, class, sexual orientation, nation status, geographic location, health status, religion, etc.
Improving Health Outcomes for Perinatal Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence through Legal Services - Amanda Elkanick Oder, Bronwyn Blake
Amanda Elkanick Oder, Bronwyn Blake
The prevalence of intimate partner violence against pre and postnatal mothers is disturbing and in need of legal remedies to address social determinants of health. Both the legal and medical systems are vital to the health of our society, but when combined, are immensely important in fighting and preventing domestic violence as a public health crisis. Through partnerships with legal aid organizations, healthcare professionals can ensure that patients are provided legal options that could prevent future intimate partner violence and possible child abuse. The presenters will discuss these social determinants, the role of medical/healthcare professionals within the scope of victim advocacy, and legal alternatives for survivors.
Indigenizing Your Housing & Advocate Response Team (HART) - Victoria Ybanez
Advocates are consistently seeking safe housing options for survivors, and housing authorities are looking for ways to build in programming to enhance family stability, as these two issues are primary concerns for domestic violence survivors. However, these obstacles are even tougher for Indigenous victims who have unique needs and require specialized services. Therefore, Tribal advocates and Tribal housing authorities are crucial in building a collaborative team to address these concerns. Advocate and housing program staff will vary, but collaboration is essential to address housing gaps in tribal communities. The presenter will discuss the individual, community, and systemic benefits of creating and sustaining a Tribal response team whose members have common goals of filling community housing gaps, improving survivor safety, and developing wrap-around housing responses. Team development involving decisions based on indigenizing a mission, vision, and philosophy, as well as HART recruitment to include survivors will be discussed.
Indigenous Solutions: Centering Native Advocacy for our Relatives - Victoria Ybanez, Hope Wenke
Victoria Ybanez, Hope Wenke
Violence against Indigenous women is the highest of any group in the U.S. According to the National Institute of Justice. More than four in five American Indian and Alaska Native women (84.3%) have experienced violence in their lifetime and more than one in three American Indian and Alaska Native women (39.8%) have experienced violence in the past year. Among victims who needed services, 38.2% of American Indian and Alaska Native women were unable to get needed services. While there are core crisis activities an advocate program will cover, all too often, advocacy does not meet the complex needs of Indigenous Survivors. Centering responses within culture will strengthen the effectiveness and healing for Indigenous Survivors in ways that mainstream advocacy cannot accomplish. The presenters will focus on the core aspects of advocacy for Indigenous advocates including centering cultural activities and practices, healing options, and identity strengthening within a crisis response.
Innovations for Empowering Young People with Relationship Health Education - Melanie Sperling, Katie Hood
Melanie Sperling, Katie Hood
High schools, colleges, and university campuses grapple with incidents of relationship abuse and intimate partner violence involving teenage and young adult students. This negative culture is often perpetuated by myths and misconceptions of gender roles and expectations. The One Love Foundation, a national non-profit organization with the goal of ending relationship abuse, empowers young people with the tools and resources needed to recognize the signs of healthy and unhealthy relationships and bring life-saving prevention education to their communities. This workshop will focus on strategies to reach middle school, high school and college students with relationship health education. Using data and the domestic violence community’s best practices, One Love developed the 10 signs of healthy and unhealthy relationships, as well as a curriculum of educational videos, social media campaigns, and train-the-trainer programs. Additionally, this workshop features tools on how to communicate with young people about abuse prevention in their own language.
CASE STUDY: Insult to Injury: When a Prosecutor's Daughter is Trafficked - Miiko Anderson
As a prosecuting attorney, Miiko Anderson was no stranger to dealing with cases involving brutal and heinous acts, having tried some of the most violent sexual assault, domestic violence, and gang cases in her community. However, in 2014, life as Ms. Anderson knew it was turned upside down when she learned that her daughter was forcibly taken out of state as a victim of domestic sex trafficking–happening right under her nose. From the unique perspective of both a prosecutor and mother of a victim, Ms. Anderson will provide a rare and raw account of her story and the lessons she learned as a result. The presenter will provide insight into how denial, guilt, and shame serve as barriers to recovery, highlight the impact of secondary trauma, and share how to turn life’s most painful experiences into a driving force to empower and protect others.
Intimate Partner Homicide: Solving Cold Cases with an Evidence-Based Interview Strategy - Jon Turbett
Violent acts against women in the U.S. are often unwitnessed and unreported, drastically decreasing the solvability of these types of cases. The result is they often go cold. But what happens when investigators re-interview suspects in cold case intimate partner homicides? What should a suspect interview strategy look like now versus what it looked like years ago when the crime occurred? This workshop will examine the ins and outs of an evidence-based strategy for solving criminal cases. Using a real–life case example, the presenters will discuss how enhanced interview skills, social influence techniques, and overcoming minimal physical evidence can be used to find justice for victims and their families.
“It Wasn’t Me!”: Making the Wrong Arrests Within LGBTQIA+ Intimate Partner Violence Cases - Michael Crumrine
Law enforcement and the criminal justice system does a good job of responding to, investigating, and making mandated arrests when required in most intimate partner situations. However, within same sex couples, the signs of intimate partner violence (IPV) are often missed, or calls for service discounted as just a disturbance between roommates or “friends.” Failure to identify the signs of intimate partner violence in same sex couples could lead to not arresting anyone or worse, arresting both the victim and the aggressor. Misunderstanding these cases or not recognizing it as IPV can be devastating and deadly. This workshop will explore recent studies which highlight law enforcement’s need to understand the dynamics present in these cases, and provide them with tangible tools to accurately identify who the primary aggressor is in same sex IPV cases.
It's in the Details: Documenting the DV Investigation & Why What is Written Matters - Kimberly Orts
Crimes involving intimate partners are not only some of the most complex to investigate, but also the most difficult to translate into words. What is or is not documented can aid future investigations, impact judges’ decisions on probable cause, bond conditions, and/or whether to release a defendant from custody, and can influence case reviews as prosecutors make charging decisions, prepare for hearings, and develop strategies for trial. This workshop will provide suggestions on how to bring calm to chaos through a template designed to organize the information to help investigators present a clear and accurate depiction of events through report and affidavit writing while making it easily consumable to the reader. The presenter will use real life examples to showcase the importance of capturing and documenting the dynamics of control and fear, how to be thorough but concise, using effective language, avoiding damaging and inflammatory language, and the historical value.
It's Not Always Physical: Coercive Control & Post-Separation Abuse - Christine Cocchiola
For far too long domestic abuse has been perceived as a violent act, physical in nature. However, research now affirms that domestic abuse is based on a specific, intangible component of power and control called coercive control. This particular abuse, psychological, legal, financial, sexual, and use of the children, often does not end at the time the relationship ends. If anything, coercive control intensifies, known as post-separation abuse. Furthermore, at the most crucial moment of major decision-making, victims find themselves being dismissed by the legal and judicial system intended to protect them and their children. This workshop will explore the ways that post-separation abuse is exacerbated by the criminal justice system and to examine techniques to better advocate for and provide improved services to victims and survivors of domestic violence.
Jennifer 42: Coercive Control as Worst Case Scenario - Elle Kamihira, Laura Richards, Jessica Rosenbeck
Elle Kamihira, Laura Richards, Jessica Rosenbeck
The film JENNIFER, 42, about murder victim Jennifer Magnano, and the subsequent development of Jennifers’ Law, championed by her surviving children, reveals the devastating impact of unidentified and unacknowledged coercive control, and its close correlation with femicide. In this workshop, Ms. Magnano’s daughter will share what it was like to grow up and survive extreme coercive control, and trauma at the hands of father Scott Magnano, but also how the actions of police, family and criminal court, and other ‘system actors’ enabled Mr. Magnano’s continued abuse, control and eventual murder of Jennifer. The presenters will unpack Mr. Magnano’s escalating behavior and the many red flags that signaled that he was becoming an increasing threat, as well as the ‘system’ that did not understand the danger the family were in and failed to protect them.
Judicial Considerations on Victim Safety & Offender Accountability - Rob Cañas
Victim safety and offender accountability are two sides of the same coin. Courts that do not do one well are probably not doing the other well either. This workshop will discuss the techniques courts can use to enhance victim safety and offender accountability. The presenter will also describe the structure of a dedicated domestic violence court and how to set one up in one’s community.
The Kavanaugh Effect: The Aftermath of High-Profile Sex Crime Allegations - Ric Hertel
Liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican, the nomination process of Supreme Court Justice Bret Kavanaugh has had, and will have, a significant impact on sex crimes prosecutions throughout this country. The divisive nature of the proceedings, the use of a sex crimes prosecutor by the Senate Judiciary, and the victim’s delayed report has caused wariness and skepticism in the general public (our venire). How prosecutors talk to jurors, uncover any juror bias, and generally present evidence must factor into these proceedings. The presenter will advise, explore and discuss strategy and the possible pit falls for prosecutors, post-Kavanaugh. The presenter will also discuss the impact of the Weinstein case, Cosby’s charge, conviction, and reversal, the #MeToo movement, and other high profile sexual misconduct allegations have on investigations, charging, pre-trial preparation, and trying these cases.
Learning from Investigating a Psychopath-The First Wife: John Meehan’s Reign of Terror - Laura Richards, Tonia Bales
Laura Richards, Tonia Bales
Tonia Bales was married to John Meehan for 10 years and had two daughters by him. He later married Debra Newell and after a re-investigation into Meehan’s criminal activity, Ms. Bales was shocked at what investigators discovered. The re-investigation was the first deep dive into Meehan’s behavior and psychology with the findings documented in the podcast, The First Wife: John Meehan’s Reign of Terror. Meehan took Ms. Bales to family court and although he threatened to kill her, he was still allowed access to Ms. Bales’ children despite serious drug charges, threats to kill, and stalking. At no point was information and intelligence about Meehan interfaced nor of him being properly risk-assessed despite his prolific offending history. This workshop will focus on concepts of early identification, intervention, and prevention of coercive control, stalking, domestic abuse, and behavioral profiling of perpetrators.
The Long-Term Impact of Criminalizing Survivors of Sex Trafficking: An Intersectional, Trauma-Informed, Survivor-Centered Approach - Shobana Powell, Ashante Taylorcox, Cristian Eduardo
Shobana Powell, Ashante Taylorcox, Cristian Eduardo, Brittany Pearson
With survivors of trafficking often criminalized for their own exploitation, the criminalization of sex trafficking victims is a narrative being debated and discussed across VAW legislation, law enforcement policy, and advocacy leadership. This workshop, led by diverse advocate and survivor experts from across the U.S. with clinical and/or lived experience of multiple forms of human trafficking, sex, labor, pimp-controlled, familial, domestic, international, child, and adult trafficking, will discuss the long-term psychological, economic, and educational impacts on survivors. The presenter will examine how traffickers and sex buyers utilize criminalization as a form of coercive control, what this means in the context of generational and historical trauma for marginalized communities, and how to support survivors’ short-term safety and long-term healing in ways that share power and do not cause harm.
Looking for Love? Watch Out for Your Wallet - Camelia Lopez, Donna Strittmatter Max
Camelia Lopez, Donna Strittmatter Max
Online dating has revolutionized how couples connect and has helped facilitate millions of people to link up with new loves or even new jobs, but unfortunately, it has also helped scammers find new people to exploit. This workshop will introduce attendees to the world of transnational organized crime and money mules. The presenters will explain how and where the fraudsters operate and the most common lies and techniques they use to gain the trust of unwitting victims. Attendees will also be taught ways to identify a scam and protect themselves, and also where to go if they discover they have been a victim. Hear from career prosecutors who have seen and heard it all, and brought the scammers to justice.
CASE STUDY: Looks Can Be Deceiving: Catching Smugglers & Traffickers of Women & Drugs - Johna Stallings, Sara Siegel
Johna Stallings, Sara Siegel
Until one victim’s brother called police when confronted with the payment of thousands of dollars or the death of his brother in June 2019, no one in a nice neighborhood in Houston had any idea what was happening behind closed doors of a small, four-bedroom home. Specifically, that women had been smuggled into the U.S. and made to take care of other exploited persons while the smugglers trafficked drugs and multiple persons at gunpoint from Mexico through Houston to other areas of the U.S. During this case study, attendees will discover how Mexican gangs traffic exploited persons and drugs into Texas and what the Houston Police Department did to save 15 people located in the home in only their underwear for clothing.
Lurking in the Shadows: The Unknown Presence of Spyware - Bryan Franke
Spyware is yet another technological advancement that abusers can use to exert power and control over their victims. As most everyone now owns a smartphone and/or tablet of some sort, there have been many concerns around spyware existing on their devices. This workshop will explain what spyware can and cannot do, certain conditions that must exist for specific software to function, and what can be done to stop it. Attendees will be shown simple steps that can be performed with the smartphone in question that may give insight to whether specific spyware is present or not. The presenter will take a more detailed look at installing spyware on a smartphone, and conclude with a live demo of a phone that has spyware on it, as well as what that phone looks like when the spyware is accessed by an abuser.
Medical & Legal Working Together to Keep Victims Safe - Robert Frechette
The relationships between medical staff, police officers, and attorneys working on behalf of victims and survivors of violence can often be strained. It is important for medical providers and members of the criminal justice system to work together to create more safety for victims and increase the ability to hold offenders accountable. This workshop will examine the important role of medical providers when working with victims and offenders, demonstrate how the criminal justice system can use medical information for successful prosecution, and provide strategies for collaboration while still adhering to patient confidentiality and organizational policy.
Military Sexual Violence: How Did We Get Here & How Do We Fix It? - Lindsey Knapp
Military sexual violence has become increasingly prevalent on military campuses, consistently portrayed in the news, and continually debated on political and legislative platforms. The presenter will discuss the history of sexual violence in the military, current statistics and trends, and proposed reforms and their effectiveness. Additionally, how the military parallels their civilian counterparts, and how these issues bleed over to our non-military populations will be discussed. The presenter will examine the most promising ways to solve the problem of military sexual violence, and what can be done to help. Real life examples, community impacts, and complex military concepts will likewise be explored.
The Misuse of Social Media: It’s No Longer Hard Out Here for a Pimp - Brooke Grona-Robb, Cara Foos Pierce, Vennesa Villareal
Brooke Grona-Robb, Cara Foos Pierce, Vennesa Villareal
Social media permeates every aspect of sex trafficking from victim targeting, team recruitment, buyer advertising, and witness tampering. Furthermore, young people post every aspect of their lives on social media, and traffickers seize this information and use it to identify and manipulate victims. This workshop will explore the key role that social media plays in the victimization of women by traffickers. The presenters will also discuss the pervasiveness and glorification of pimp culture in the media, and how that impacts victims and jurors during prosecutions.
Narcissism is the Key to Understanding Domestic & Gender-Based Violence - Ramani Durvasula
Narcissism is often portrayed and misunderstood as superficial vanity and attention-seeking, as well as mere egocentricity and selfishness. Although these are elements of narcissism, the key pillars of narcissism reveal a behavioral, cognitive, emotional, and characterologic pattern that is associated with a greater likelihood of physically and psychologically abusing partners and other people close to them. Many clinicians are not adequately trained in personality patterns such as narcissism, which can often leave a “hole” in an understanding of these violent and abusive patterns. Furthermore, current models of family-based violence and gender-based violence do not account for narcissism and its associated patterns. This workshop will clarify exactly what narcissism is, what it means clinically, and how this pattern is central to understanding domestic abuse and gender-based violence in all forms. The presenter will provide recommendations on how law enforcement, judicial institutions, and policy makers can better inform realistic prevention and intervention.
Nashville’s Journey: How to Transform the Way Your City Responds to Victims of Interpersonal Violence - Diane Lance, Becky Bullard
Diane Lance, Becky Bullard
Nashville was once one of the cutting-edge cities in America for its work addressing domestic violence. However, with unanticipated changes within law enforcement, and prosecution and courts, victim services began to fall apart. After a two-year Praxis Safety & Accountability Audit, the city of Nashville recommitted to prioritizing victims of interpersonal violence through multiple changes in the criminal justice system and larger nonprofit community. These changes included the development of a court-based family justice center, community-based family justice center, and mechanized safety interventions for the city’s highest-risk intimate partner violence cases. As a result of these many changes, this revolutionary work has been institutionalized as a city priority with the formation of one of the country’s only stand-alone governmental departments focusing exclusively on interpersonal violence. In this workshop, attendees will learn about Nashville’s journey and key takeaways to develop their own innovative programming and practices throughout your city.
Navigating the Unique Complexities of Familial Trafficking (Lunch Session) - Christine Cesa
Familial trafficking is one of the most severe typologies of human trafficking. Familial trafficking is often not discussed, and is under-identified. In these cases, an immediate family member or a caregiver becomes the trafficker oftentimes, the victim is particularly young. Survivors of familial trafficking endure severe and complex trauma, and the service provision needs to be individualized and provide the care for the needs of each survivor in order to move from victim to survivor to thriver. These supportive services in many cases will be long-term, and may impact their adult lives, with many survivors of familial trafficking not being able to leave their exploitation until later in life because the trauma is complex and multi-faceted. The presenter will demonstrate the needs that are present in survivors’ lives, even as adults, and strategies to address those needs including practical tools, case examples, and pathways to assist survivors in thriving.
NDAA 2022 Implementation and the Army’s Office of the Special Trial Counsel (Lunch Session) -Robert Stelle
Come join members of the Office of the Judge Advocate General’s Office as they discuss the 2022 NDAA legislation and the Office’s plans to create an Office of the Special Trial Counsel. This lunch session is of special interest to prosecutors, victim service advocates or attorneys located near an army installation.
CASE STUDY: A Near Miss: Prosecuting a Human Trafficking Recruitment Scheme - Jennifer Rausch, Jomel Spurlock
Jennifer Rausch, Jomel Spurlock
Sex trafficking rings are prolific in the U.S. and, although Ohio is no exception, a weakness in Ohio law presented challenges in a case involving the victimization of a 16-year-old survivor. This case study will examine a sex trafficking case that operated in Central Ohio for several months in 2017. The presenters will explore the investigative and prosecutorial processes and courtroom outcomes. The instrumentality of the case advocate’s ability to work with the victim from the beginning of the investigation to the end of the court proceedings (and beyond) will also be discussed.
CASE STUDY: Never Forget a Face! The Downfall of Justin Ray - Kerry Adcock
Research has shown that the majority of sexual assault crimes are executed by someone we know, whether it be acquaintances or family members. However, the concept of “stranger danger” should not be discarded. Unfortunately, random attacks on women still occur and continue to instill fear and trepidation among victims and within the community. This case study will take a deep dive into the case of Justin Ray, a violent sexual offender sentenced to 50 years in prison, who attacked a female jogger by violently beating and sexually assaulting her. The presenter will highlight the importance of a good composite drawing of the suspect, and the pitfalls of eyewitness descriptions. Case interviews, DNA, and the use of social media will also be discussed.
CASE STUDY: Never Give Up: The 47-Year Journey for Justice for Carla Walker - Kim D’Avignon, Emily Dixon
Kim D’Avignon, Emily Dixon
In 1974, Carla Walker was abducted, raped, and murdered in Fort Worth, Texas. The case went unsolved for almost five decades. Using new DNA technology, this case was finally solved in 2020. The presenters will examine the investigation and successful prosecution of the Carla Walker case and walk attendees through the forensic genetic genealogy (FGG) DNA analysis that ultimately unmasked the killer who had lived a few miles from the crime scene the entire time. Attendees will also be shown how prosecutors successfully navigated getting the FGG admitted into court in one of the first trials to use FGG in the nation. Additionally, the challenges of putting together a case where many of the original participants had died will also be discussed.
Nine Common Myths About Abusers & How They Still Matter - David Adams
How do offenders of intimate partner abuse avoid detection and accountability in courts and communities? The presenter aims to answer that question and many more by discussing nine common myths of abusers that contribute to the abusive deception, misunderstandings about victims, and the underlying traits of abusers. This workshop will provide deeper insight about abusers providing tools for those who advocate for victims and their legal advocates to recognize underlying traits of abusers and to avoid being manipulated. An examination of abusers’ psychological characteristics, manipulation and excuse-making strategies, their common deficits as parents, and how these deficits impact their children will also be conducted.
No Face, No Case: Responding to Witness Intimidation in IPV Cases - John Guard, Heidi Bonner
John Guard, Heidi Bonner
Witness intimidation in cases of intimate partner violence is a significant problem, and research suggests that as many as 80% of cases that reach court involve victims that recant or refuse to testify. Successful prosecution is also hampered by the constraints imposed by the Crawford v. Washington decision. Even the most dedicated professionals cannot effectively address the problem of witness intimidation unless they know the specifics of how it occurs, how to investigate it, and how to respond in a way that protects the witness while holding the offender accountable for both the original crime and for the efforts to obstruct justice. Using several examples of recorded audio and written letters, attendees will witness strategies offenders use to compel victims to recant or fail to appear in court.
Officer-Involved Domestic & Sexual Violence - Mark Wynn
As law enforcement confront danger every day on the job, they should be highly protected from domestic and sexual violence. This workshop is intended to educate service providers about the dynamics and impact of officer-involved domestic and sexual violence. The presenter will explore the historical view of these crimes within the police family, insight into the lack of accurate statistics, and the unique characteristics of conducting investigations. Nationally-established standards for recruiting, training, corrective discipline, and the continued need for implementation of policy will also be discussed.
One Size Doesn't Fit All: Cultural Considerations When Working with African American Survivors of Sex Trafficking - Hannah Counter
African Americans are 1.5 to 10x more likely than other races to be sex-trafficking victims. This workshop is designed to provide a relevant and up-to-date understanding of the intersectionality of the increased victimization of African American women within the realm of sex trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation and the role that systemic racism, poverty, and educational barriers play in contribution to this victimization. Moreover, the presenter will discuss best practices for service providers to deliver adequate care to this population through the lens of intersectionality and cultural norms, and ways in which to impact the trajectory of further victimization on a macro level.
Overcoming “The Rough Sex Defense” & Other Consent Defenses - Kelsey McKay, Scott Hampton, Andrea Zaferes
Kelsey McKay, Scott Hampton, Andrea Zaferes
Justice for victims often ends as soon as a perpetrator claims that “it was consensual.” Practitioners regularly fall into the trap that the case is doomed as a “he said-she said” and is impossible to win without considering that consent could be compliance, or that saying ‘no’ may come with a cost. Complex dynamics, lack of training, and inadequate policies have left a film of confusion for investigators and prosecutors and allowed sexual predators to become serial offenders. Asphyxiation has become a weapon of choice, used by domestic abusers, rapists, child abusers, killers, pornographers, and traffickers. The use of strangulation within sexually-motivated crimes is frequently disregarded by practitioners allowing offenders to escape accountability by simply claiming it was “rough sex gone wrong.” The presenters will explore the role that asphyxiation plays within BDSM vs the world of crime and exploitation when dealing with the most dangerous offenders in society.
A Pandemic Gamble: Improving Hospital-Based Screenings for Violence Against Persons - Brittany Pahl, Courtney Edwards
Brittany Pahl, Courtney Edwards
Studies have shown that when female victims and survivors present to the emergency department, there are overlapping traumas, with patients who have been both physically assaulted, either through intimate partner violence, domestic violence, or human trafficking as well as sexually assaulted. As many victims seek examination or treatment in the emergency room from a sexual assault, they are often unaware that they are also the victims of other types of assault. Witnessing the persistent re-occurrence of this specific patient history, the Parkland Hospital Forensic Nursing Department designed a program that directly incorporated their internal victim advocacy services to provide a comprehensive assault screening initiative executed by their emergency room triage team. This workshop will examine the current screening processes in many emergency departments, describe how a multidisciplinary approach towards screening for violence against persons can be implemented in a hospital-based emergency department setting, and illustrate the importance of emergency department data-collecting.
Paper Trails & Breadcrumbs: Reporting Protective Orders & Bond Conditions for Homicide Prevention - Kimberly Piechowiak
Protective orders and bonds conditions are just a few of the tools at a judge’s disposal to prevent domestic violence homicides. However, such orders are useless without an agile platform and process to ensure that this information is available to justice professionals for enforcement and the safety of survivors, officers, and the community at large. This workshop will present an overview of various types of protective order reporting available across the country and will highlight recent changes in Texas that will help to get crucial information to courts, law enforcement, and prosecution agencies to facilitate enforcement of these orders.
The Perfect Pick: Victimizing the Intellectually Disabled - Amy Derrick
Approximately 6.5 million people in the United States have been diagnosed with an intellectual disability. Children and adults with an intellectual and or developmental disability often make the perfect targets for a sexually violent offense. They also provide a unique set of challenges in the investigation and prosecution of sexual assault cases. This presentation will address best practices for the investigation of these types of cases as well as provide strategies for evidence gathering, charging decisions and successful prosecution, through the use of sound legal principals, established law and real case examples that have been successfully investigated and prosecuted.
Politics, Policy, & Coalition Building: Engaging Leaders to Make a Difference - Rania Batrice
Grassroots and mid-level efforts are valuable and necessary. However, without the backing of governing policies, many initiatives are not given the space to reach their full potential. In order for real change to be optimized, it is imperative that both community and governmental leaders not only understand, but embrace the need for strong advocacy, resources, and support for survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking by way of protective legislation, safeguarding policies, and fortifiable coalitions. The presenter will discuss the importance of internal and external strategies and coalition-building when it comes to creating and pushing for policies that actually make a difference for women.
Preparing a Domestic Violence Case with the Defense in Mind - Nancy Oglesby
Investigating and prosecuting domestic violence cases is often very challenging. Victim behavior is many times counter-intuitive, the victim’s ability to impart what happened can be compromised due to a number of factors, and victims frequently become uncooperative with the prosecution prior to trial. This workshop will address the difficult issues faced by law enforcement and prosecutors in bringing a successful domestic violence case to trial. At each phase of the process, the presenters will address how the defense will view and prepare for the case, as well as address best practices for law enforcement and prosecutors to build the strongest cases possible.
Presenting a Sexual Assault Case with the Defense in Mind - Nancy Oglesby
Investigating and prosecuting sexual violence cases are often very challenging. Victim behavior is many times counter-intuitive, the victim’s memory may be affected, and rape myths and biases present hurdles throughout the process. This workshop will address the difficult issues faced by law enforcement and prosecutors in bringing a successful sexual assault case to trial. At each phase of the process, the presenters will address how the defense will view and prepare for the case, as well as address best practices for law enforcement and prosecutors to build the strongest cases possible.
Preventing Murder in Slow Motion: Identifying, Assessing, & Managing Risk - Laura Richards
Femicide is at an all-time high. In the U.S., four women are murdered each day by a current or former partner. The current approach is not working. The murders do not come out of the blue and the wrong questions continue to be asked of victims by professionals, family, friends, work colleagues, and the media. The DASH Risk Identification, Assessment, and Management Model is used widely in the UK, informed by the multi-agency analysis domestic homicides, near misses and one year of domestic abuse allegations reported to the Metropolitan Police Service. The presenter will discuss coercive control behaviors, the high-risk clusters, why motivation is vitally important to understand along with the timeline, and why practices should move away from an incident-based response and violence model to one of asking questions about coercive control.
Project ReVEAL: Making the Case for Video Evidence & Video Recorded Statements - Bethany Backes, Staley Heatly, Karina Powell, Matthew Stephenson
Bethany Backes, Staley Heatly, Karina Powell, Matthew Stephenson
Project ReVEAL (Recording Victim Video Statements as Evidence to Advance Legal Outcomes) is a multi-site evaluation in the State of Texas which examines the use of cameras (handheld, body-worn) at the scene of family violence incidents and how such evidence is used in case decision-making. Preliminary data indicates that video recorded victim/witness statements are associated with an increase in guilty pleas and can improve system efficiencies. Criminal justice professionals viewed the use of video equipment in family violence cases as an enhancement to current practices. This workshop will highlight key findings from Project ReVEAL. Implications for the use of video evidence in the investigation and prosecution of family violence cases and ethical considerations for the use of videos as it relates to survivor privacy and autonomy will also be discussed.
Protect & Serve: Community Policing, Domestic Conflict, & First Response - Mike Butler, Briana Barocas, Kristin Daley
Mike Butler, Briana Barocas, Kristin Daley
Within public discourse and the current political climate, the extent to which law enforcement enforce the law has come under severe scrutiny. For domestic violence victims and survivors, especially within marginalized communities, the presence of police can be both a blessing and a curse. This workshop is designed to examine the intersection of police-community trust, domestic violence, and restorative justice. The presenters will discuss how police can establish a departmental and community culture to create a safe space for building community-wide awareness and reporting of domestic violence. The Longmont model of the police pre-booking diversion to restorative justice for a wide range of situations will also be introduced. Additionally, the use of restorative justice, specifically for domestic violence cases, including research on existing judge- and prosecutor-led programs in Utah and Arizona will be addressed.
Providing Rural Hospitals with Access to Expert SANEs Through the Tex-TRAC Telehealth Program - Kim Zemanek, Stacy Mitchell, Kayce Ward
Kim Zemanek, Stacy Mitchell, Kayce Ward
Medical forensic exams (MFEs) conducted by sexual assault nurse examiners (SANEs) helps minimize additional trauma to victims. MFEs conducted by SANEs result in more effective evidence collection, greater admissibility of evidence, and greater likelihood of case progression. Unfortunately, many areas of Texas lack access to SANEs due to its large population, large geographical area, and predominantly rural and underserved regions. While Texas law requires all hospitals with emergency rooms to provide MFEs to patients who do not want to transfer to Sexual Assault Forensic Examination-ready hospitals with SANEs, most facilities still prefer to transfer. In response, the Texas Teleforensic Remote Assistance Center (Tex-TRAC) was established in 2019. The presenters will discuss the development and implementation of Tex-TRAC and its telehealth consultations and guidance, evaluate lessons learned from cases to date, and share how they have adapted the service to better meet needs of patients and hospital clinicians.
Raising the Standard: What to Expect from an Effective On-Scene Investigation - Mark Wynn
This workshop is designed to illustrate how to effectively arrive at a successful investigation with the ultimate goal in mind of victim justice, public safety, and offender accountability. Attendees will be taught six objectives of an on-scene investigation, victim-centered trauma-informed interviewing techniques, victim behaviors, and offender motivation. Additionally, this workshop will enable attendees to see the offender manipulation through the eyes of the victim, law enforcement, advocate, and its impact. Moreover, this workshop will enhance the participants’ understanding of the power, control and manipulation tactics used against the victim and the service provider as well as probable cause, justifiable self-defense, and determining dominant/primary aggressor.
Rape & Race: The Two Elephants in a Crowded Room - Lavinia Masters
The culture of rape has engulfed Black womanhood from chattel slavery through the Jim Crow Era, emphasizing how white supremacy, racism, and legal segregation all cemented the idea that black women could not actually be rape victims. With a historical lens on the intersections of race and rape, this workshop intends to increase culturally–responsive practices, especially for people who provide survivor-centered, trauma-informed direct services and social justice for Black women rape victims. The presenter will share her testimony of having survived a heinous rape and the subsequent treatment by law enforcement investigators and the criminal justice system. The presenter will also include historical research, policies, quantitative/qualitative data on the intersection of race and rape, as well as the more than 13-year timeline that marked the battles that led to The Lavinia Masters Act of 2019 (HB 8) that set strict requirements around testing and preserving rape kits.
CASE STUDY: The Recant & How to Still Prove the Case - Kathryn Marsh, Melissa Hoppmeyer
Kathryn Marsh, Melissa Hoppmeyer
Intimate partner violence and child sexual abuse often overlap with power and control dynamics, creating forced recants. Within this particular case study, investigators were able to identify that the recant by a 17-year-old daughter was caused by the economic abuse and control over the family by the stepfather and the mother trying to comply with the defendant in order to be able to file for divorce and maintain custody of the two younger children. The presenter will explore when economic abuse creates a recant by the victim and witness, as well as a number of different investigative techniques in order to prove the recant was a false and manipulated recant, and that the actual reports of abuse were truthful and reliable. Collaborative investigations, reasons for recantation, witness intimidation, and strategies for successful prosecution will also be discussed.
Risk Factors for Intimate Partner Homicide: PAIRS Study - Jacqueline Campbell, Mikisha Hooper
Jacqueline Campbell, Mikisha Hooper
*Description coming soon*
SB476: Developing Your SART Protocol - Kristen Lenau, Haleh Cochran
Kristen Lenau, Haleh Cochran
This lunch session will cover the basic protocol requirements outlined in SB476 (A bill that addresses gaps in adult sexual assault response by requiring the establishment of SARTs in Texas counties) from the Texas 87th Legislative Session for those responsible for developing and writing their community’s protocol. This lunch session is applicable for advocates, law enforcement, prosecutors, forensic examiners, and mental health providers that sit on teams and respond to adult sexual assault in their county.
A Search for Answers: Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons - Leslie A. Hagen
Leslie A. Hagen
In 2020, Congress passed the Savanna’s Act and The Not Invisible Act in an effort to develop solutions and provide resources to help solve the problem of Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons. The presenter will describe what is currently known about the problem and federal implementation efforts designed to help address the issue. This workshop aims to tackle important topics like data collection, victim advocacy, creating a community strategy for addressing missing persons, and working collaboratively across jurisdictions.
A Seat at the Table: The Critical Role of Corrections in Abuser Accountability - Scott Hampton
According to one county prosecutor, “It appears that the highest risk time for domestic violence offenders to be re-arrested is shortly after they are released from a correctional facility.” Such an observation was both confusing and troubling in light of the fact that the purpose of the correctional system was to “correct” the offender’s behavior, not to make re-offense more likely. In response, that community took it upon themselves to examine the critical role of the correctional system as part of a coordinated community effort to address intimate partner abuse. This workshop will serve as a report on what that community learned.
Seeking Excellence in Service Provision for Trafficking Survivors: The Critical Role of Rape Crisis Centers & Dual Domestic Violence Agencies - Kara Harrington, Laramie Gorbett
Kara Harrington, Laramie Gorbett
A reality that may not readily be acknowledged is that rape crisis centers and domestic violence agencies centers are already serving trafficking survivors whether they are being identified and provided with specialized services or not. With rape crisis centers and domestic violence agencies playing an integral role in the anti-trafficking movement, it is imperative that the agencies be equipped with the tools and support necessary to adapt traditional services to meet the needs of human trafficking survivors. Additionally, these agencies are often the only place to receive services in rural communities or areas that lack human trafficking organizations. This workshop will discuss the successful service expansion for rape crisis centers and dual domestic violence agencies in Texas. It will also highlight challenges, best practices, screening tools, insights from the field, integration of the Commercially Sexually Exploited Youth (CSEY) Advocacy Model, coordination of adult services, and cross-discipline collaboration.
Sexual Deviant Killers - Lawrence Simon
This workshop will intricately explore the deviant minds of convicted serial lust murderers and violent sex offenders, who largely target women, children, and other living organisms. Specifically, the psychology behind the crime will be discussed, while analyzing and interpreting true accounts and disturbing viewpoints and motives of some of the most notorious serial lust murders and other dangerous men behind bars. The presenter will probe the evolution and unsettling features of violent deviant pathology providing forethought and credible warning signs that include elusive topics such as necrophilia, cannibalism, criminal sexual sadism, bestiality, and serial lust murder. Throughout the workshop, the presenter will make use of numerous case samples, while incorporating crime scene illustrations that portray multifarious features of unusual sexual perversions. Psychosocial histories and backgrounds of perpetrators will be presented and analyzed. Due to its explicit nature, this workshop is primarily designed for persons who works in law enforcement, forensics, corrections, probation, and parole.
Sexual Exploitation & Coercive Control: Connecting Client Experiences to Research & Legislation - Carrie McManus, Andrea Silverstone
Carrie McManus, Andrea Silverstone
The language and understanding of coercive control have started to shift how we view and comprehend experiences of domestic violence, deepening the capacity to appreciate the long-term impacts of this crime, often perpetrated against women and girls. Little research, however, has been done on the intersections of coercive control, domestic violence, and sexual exploitation/trafficking. This workshop will provide an overview of a research project by Sagesse, exploring how coercive control and experiences of sexual exploitation link together to impact victims of crime. Sagesse has explored the impacts of sexual exploitation within practice, policy, and legislation in multiple jurisdictions in Canada, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, the Netherlands, and Australia. The presenters will discuss recommendations for practice and policy with a lens for understanding coercive control and its impact on sexual exploitation, and how to implement suggested adjustments and changes.
SHARPer Image: Creating a Clearer Picture of Stalking Risk - Jennifer Landhuis
Accurately assessing the level of risk and developing responsive safety plans in stalking cases can be challenging. The Stalking Harassment Assessment & Risk Profile (SHARP) is a free web-based risk assessment tool that provides an assessment of the “big picture” of stalking situations based on the intentional course of conduct, fear, concern for safety and other emotional distress, and unwantedness of the behaviors. This interactive workshop will conduct a SHARP assessment on a case scenario and discuss the ways SHARP can be used to increase victim safety and coordinate strategies to hold offenders accountable. Law enforcement, advocates, prosecutors and other allied professionals are encouraged to attend.
Shattered Pieces (Film Screening) - Kerry Ann Frazier Zamore
Kerry Ann Frazier Zamore
Shattered Pieces is a film based on real events and taken from excerpts from the book “Restored” authored by Kerry Ann Frazier. Shattered Pieces depicts verbal, emotional, and physical violence as well as the impact that trauma has on children in the home. The film aims to bring to light the darkness of the cycle of abuse and address the barriers in which often prohibit victims from leaving dangerous relationships.
Silent Crimes of Financial Abuse & its Steep Detriment for Women (Lunch Session) - Doreen Hunter
In a 2008 study of women who escaped domestic violence, 99% of the women reported they had experienced economic abuse and only 98% reported physical abuse. Financial abuse can be a silent crime that ranges from interfering with a woman’s ability to keep gainful employment to exploiting the victim where their salary is the only household income. In some instances, women making six figure salaries are forced to relinquish 95% of their income to their batterer. This lunch session will review the three standard instruments that measure the nature and extent of financial abuse in women’s relationships and discuss other tactics found in post-separation abuse cases that are not adequately measured nor prosecuted despite most state statutes listing these crimes as felonies. How these crimes impact victims, often leaving them homeless, jobless, food insecure, or captive in violent relationships will also be addressed.
The Sneak Attack: Addressing the Pervasiveness of Involuntary Drugging - Shannon Henry
After identifying a disturbing increase in drug-facilitated crime in a South Carolina college town, SASS Go, a nonprofit established to eradicate violence, abuse, and trafficking, searched throughout the country to find solutions for identifying and ending these felony crimes. Despite a nation full of cities citing spikes in involuntary drugging, none were able to share a community response plan to deal with it. In response, SASS Go gathered a team of community leaders and critical stakeholders to create a Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) to ensure perpetrator accountability through efficient evidence collection and investigation coupled with an effective community response and awareness program. The presenter will highlight how one survey helped to identify and care for victims of drug-facilitated crimes while ensuring efficacy in evidence collection and holding perpetrators accountable. Ways to implement the SASS Go CIRT model for other communities tackling the problem of drug-facilitated crimes will also be discussed.
Somewhere Under the Rainbow: Helping Survivors of Sexual Assault & Intimate Partner Violence from the LGBTQ+ Community - Sarah Berlanga
As a community, LGBTQ+ members face higher rates of sexual assault and intimate partner violence, however, community members often face barriers in receiving services after victimization. They also face compounded trauma because of harmful legislation or lack of community support. This workshop will provide a general introduction to the LGBTQ+ community and explore historical and systemic trauma that the community has faced that may exacerbate their reactions to sexual assault or intimate partner violence. The presenter will use an intersectional approach and allow attendees to evaluate stereotypes that perpetuate victimization then discuss trauma-informed ways to support LGBTQ+ survivors.
Stalkers: How to Build a Case for Prosecution - Tracie Reilly, Aaron Savage
Tracie Reilly, Aaron Savage
When discussing stalking cases, the most common things heard are, “These cases are really hard to charge”, “These cases are really hard to prove”, “It’s easier just to go for harassment”, and “There isn’t any corroboration”. This workshop will help prepare investigators, law enforcement, and prosecutors on how to build a stalking case that can lead to a conviction, either at trial or through a plea bargain. The presenters will utilize three separate stalking cases to illustrate different charging decisions and investigative approaches. Additionally, a review of Texas caselaw supporting the elements of the Texas Statute, a generalized look at other stalking laws, techniques for victims to keep track of stalking incidents, identifying tracking devices and linking those to the perpetrators, and how to present these cases in court will also be examined.
Stalking Investigations: Video Screening & Discussion - Jennifer Landhuis, Brooke Meyer
Jennifer Landhuis, Brooke Meyer
Stalking is a prevalent, dangerous, and often misunderstood crime. By recognizing the behaviors that constitute stalking, accessing the risk factors that exist in stalking cases, and understanding the connection to intimate partner violence, first responders play an essential role in preventing escalating danger and potential homicide. During this session, the Institute for Coordinated Community Response will release its newest roll call training series on strangulation investigations. To model how this presentation can be used for group trainings, the presenters will screen the six-part video series and facilitate a group discussion between parts.
Staying SANE: A Programmatic Analysis of a Rural Rape Crisis Center - Brooke Fulton
The trajectory of the anti-rape movement in the U.S. has led to the emergence of rape crisis centers (RCCs) or Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) programs. Has the momentum improved the efficacy of its processes and practices? The presenter will provide theoretical frameworks to expound on the history of the anti-rape movement, discuss medical responses to sexual assault victims before and after this emergence, and introduce a focused case study on medical forensic exams in Coconino, Navajo, and Apache Counties in Northern Arizona. This workshop will also review a process evaluation of Northern Arizona Care and Services After Assault (NACASA) consisting of aggregated data collected from exams which highlight trends among assaults in mostly rural Northern and Northeastern Arizona.
Stop, Look, & Listen: Law Enforcement Methods When Responding to IPV Calls - Denise Jones, Dave Thomas
Denise Jones, Dave Thomas
Responding to IPV calls for service are some of the deadliest calls taken by law enforcement officials, and it is important to look beyond the obvious when responding to these calls. The presenters will explain how to approach all facets of the crime scene from the beginning of the call, what is seen and heard on approach, and, most importantly, what to obtain from the scene, suspect, victim, and other evidence. The presenters will also explore from time of dispatch, approach, and on–scene aspects of information gathering to improve law enforcement response to IPV calls for service and potentially improve the ability to prosecute these types of cases.
Suffer from Burnout? Give' Em the F.I.N.G.E.R.! - Mark Yarbrough
Burnout affects millions of Americans each year and has been called “The disease of our civilization.” The unhappiness and detachment burnout causes can threaten your job, your relationships, and your health. But there’s good news: Burnout can be healed. Audience members will learn the definition of Burnout and the symptoms thereof. More importantly, attendees will be laughing and, at the same time, learning how to apply Mark’s F.I.N.G.E.R. philosophy to help themselves or their co-workers avoid and/or recover from Burnout. You do not want to miss this training!
Supporting the Supporters: Navigating Staff Survivor Dynamics (Lunch Session) - Amanda Elkanick Oder, Natasha Herzig, Bronwyn Blake
Amanda Elkanick Oder, Natasha Herzig, Bronwyn Blake
The high statistics don’t lie. Many survivors of power-based abuse will be a part of the movement in some form or fashion, whether the abusive event(s) occur before or during their employment. Unfortunately, many survivors that work in victim services or staff who work for victim service agencies are in an abusive relationship or experience abuse while working. It is crucial that not only the victims who seek agency services are efficiently supported, but also the survivors who work for those agencies. The presenters will discuss the dynamics of this type of abuse and ways agencies can better support staff through care plans, open communication, and trauma-informed procedures. Best practices in creating an open and healthy work environment will also be addressed.
Surviving Dirty John (Lunch Session) - Debra Newell
John Meehan, a master manipulator, thief, and abuser entered Debra Newell’s life and turned it upside down. A depiction of Ms. Newell’s relationship with John Meehan was told through season one of the highly successful Bravo series, Dirty John. Afterwards, Ms. Newell penned a memoir titled, “Surviving Dirty John” and is now a motivational speaker and a noteworthy proponent of domestic abuse legislations, helping those less fortunate escape abusive relationships, and aiding those who have escaped cope with the mental and physical anguish of the life they now lead.
Teen Dating Violence: A Public Health Epidemic - Kaiti Dinges Blackburn, Evelyn Dubey
Kaiti Dinges Blackburn, Evelyn Dubey
Teen dating violence is a very real public health issue that affects teens and adolescents every day. This life-threatening violence can have lifelong effects, such as adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), on those who experience violence in their young relationships or witness it at home. These experiences can have a huge impact on future violence victimization and perpetration, and future health and opportunity. It is critical to address gender and relationship violence in a continual and comprehensive way during adolescence and young adulthood. The presenters will discuss the reality of teen dating violence, ACEs, the paradigm shift necessary to create new social norms and increase peer responsibility to take action, and programming on comprehensive cognitive, behavioral, and attitudinal changes at all levels of the socio-ecological model. Original research and data from rural, Midwest communities will also be shared.
Texans are Not for Sale: Attacking Demand for Commercial Sex - Brooke Grona-Robb, Cara Foos Pierce
Brooke Grona-Robb, Cara Foos Pierce
Many otherwise law-abiding men routinely purchase sex. They don’t ask or care if the person they are buying is a willing participant, and there will never be enough people willing to sell themselves to meet the insatiable demand from sex buyers. With that in mind, in 2021, Texas became the first state in the country to make buying adult sex a felony. Attendees can discover how legislation leading to sex buying as a felony was accomplished and about other legislative measures that work to end sex trafficking. This lunch session will also discuss investigative efforts since this law came into effect, including best practices for undercover operations and collateral consequences for sex buyers.
This Is the House Where I Learned Not to Sleep (FILM SCREENING) - Kirsten Kelly
Part quest for justice. Part journey towards healing. Ret. Lt. Mark Wynn, a childhood survivor of domestic violence, is determined to end the cultural cycles of abuse that have haunted him and dedicates his life to confront outdated systems and bias in society’s response to victims of domestic violence. He makes it his mission to challenge other men to stand up and end violence against women. As a child, Mark hid from both his abusive stepfather and the cops when they showed up at the door. Years later, as a Nashville Police Officer, he was the cop who showed up. “I lived with a monster, I know how this works,” he says, “I’ve been on both sides of that door.” With access into sensitive police trainings, Mark’s journey in the film explores the complex relationship between law enforcement and domestic violence, encountering both stubborn resistance and hard-won reforms.
This is Not My Chair: Discussions with a Crime Victim - Kristen Curran
This workshop will provide an in-depth examination of a domestic violence strangulation attack with the crime victim. The presenter is an experienced prosecutor and victims’ attorney who found herself in a life-threatening domestic violence situation. By first hearing the survivor’s account and then conducting a deeper dive into the corroborating evidence, attendees can experience a robust back and forth with a crime victim who understands firsthand both the challenges of investigating and prosecuting these crimes, as well as the unenviable challenges of being the crime victim. Melding the powerful emotional impacts of domestic violence on a person and a family with the professional experience and knowledge of the presenter, this workshop will expand an understanding of the victim’s perspective during investigation, prosecution, and healing, encourage expansive thinking about using the victims’ account to identify corroborating evidence, and improve skills to engage with crime victims.
Through the Looking Glass: Leveraging Your Own Leadership for Change - Rachael Frost
All too often, agencies diminish passion and engagement by failing to take advantage of the connection and capabilities of their own staff. “This is how we have always done it” becomes the easy fallback mantra as our organizations remain stagnant; too busy supervising to remember how to lead. This mentality can create an atmosphere that is resistant to change and prevents the true growth of the justice system, negating the needs of the victims the system serves. In such environments, people begin to feel like bystanders to their careers and circumstances, losing hope that a better way of doing things might even be possible. This workshop connects all the disciplines in the room under one umbrella of hope that guides the responsibility, possibility, and the passionate inevitability of change. Individuals across any agency can affect such change regardless of their rank or roll by leveraging their own skills and capacity for leadership. Every person has the capability to engage their environment for the better, no matter the professional or personal roadblock. The presenter will discuss inspirational leadership and business practices, and how the justice system, and those within it, can create paradigm shifts to build trust and engagement within their organization and the community at large.
CASE STUDY: A Time of Terror: The Effects of Capriglione - Tara Edsall, Ryan Gardiner
Tara Edsall, Ryan Gardiner
This case study takes a deep dive into the life and behavior of a narcissistically controlling domestic violence abuser and the effects his abuse had on the five survivors he sought out by strangling, cutting, burning, beating, attempted drowning, suffocation, and brutally raping and sodomizing the victims with objects to gain control. The presenters will explain how they came into contact with the abuser, and why it took five survivors to finally help incarcerate the offender. This case study will examine lessons learned by the investigators, advocates, and judicial system and what they could have done differently during the investigation, as well as what was done to aid in the successful prosecution.
Tiny Program, Big Changes: How Corrections Can Help Victims - Libby Hamilton
In 2017, Chairman David Gutierrez of the Texas Board of Pardons & Paroles applied for Victims of Crime Act grant funds to initiate the Board’s first ever Victim Liaison Program. The presenter will be discussing a variety of topics such as plea implications, the parole review process, training for decision-makers, post-conviction victim services in Texas, and ways to improve a victim’s experience with the criminal justice system.
Trafficking Through the Eyes of an Overcomer & the Role of Survivor Leadership - Katherine Givens
African Americans represent 14% of the nation’s general population, but 33% of African American youth are detained in detention and 40% African American women are sex trafficking victims. Black children account for nearly 51% of all juvenile prostitution arrests, more than any other racial group. Advocates, law enforcement, healthcare professionals, and community leaders play a vital role in addressing these disparities. The presenter will take a deep dive into what sex trafficking and the transition from oppressed victim to thriving overcomer look like from the lens of survivors, with a particular focus on Black victims. This workshop is designed to serve as a catalyst for exploration of key frameworks such as adultification and intersectionality: How the intersections of race, gender, criminalization, and other social dynamics intertwine to intensify challenges for trafficking victims of color.
Trafficking Tools for Latin@s Accessing Domestic Violence - Paula Gomez-Stordy
Presenters from Esperanza United, formerly the National Latin@ Network for Healthy Families & Communities, a Project of Casa de Esperanza, will present a tool to identify Latin@ survivors of trafficking who access services in domestic violence shelters and programs. Although several trafficking screening toolkits are available, most do not incorporate a culturally–relevant approach. This tool is a result of the collaboration between national and local programs that engage with communities daily to provide support to Latin@ survivors.
Transgender Women: Forgotten Victims of Human Trafficking - Kimberly Crawford
Transgender women encounter barriers to safety, security, and services which are compounded by hate, bias, misconceptions, and silence. This workshop will explore the root causes of human trafficking victimization of transgender women. By acknowledging these root causes, direct service providers can begin to understand the psychology of the various traumas experienced by transgender women and how it is compounded by their human trafficking victimization. This workshop will include a discussion about transgender women’s access to victim services, housing and mental health services, and how direct service providers can be more equitable and trauma-informed in their work.
Translating Doubt into Conviction Through the Strategic Use of Expert Witnesses - Julie Germann, Margaret Bassett, Jessica Brazeal, Khara Breeden
Julie Germann, Margaret Bassett, Jessica Brazeal, Khara Breeden
Prejudicial and false beliefs held by jurors about how “real” victims behave impact their judgments about believability, blame, and guilt. Research shows that expert witnesses can aid in dispelling myths and common misconceptions about domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking thereby improving conviction rates. Those who can effectively serve as experts include medical professionals, law enforcement, advocates, and mental health professionals. This interactive, two-part workshop will provide experts with skills to be effective witnesses and survive their day in court. The workshop will provide attendees with practical skills and guidance on how and when to use expert witnesses. In part two of this interactive workshop, attendees will have an opportunity to see an expert in action with live demonstrations of qualifying and direct expert testimony in three different case types: Domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking.
Trauma-Informed Framework for Working with Victims: Video Screening & Discussion - Justin Boardman, Brooke Meyer
Justin Boardman, Brooke Meyer
Understanding trauma’s impact on the brain is vital for effectively responding to the traumatized victims we encounter every day. Without a trauma-informed framework, a first responder can unwittingly become the first link in a long chain of re-traumatizing individuals, processes, and events that victims often find themselves navigating. By recognizing the impact of trauma and helping victims of crime feel heard within the criminal justice system, we can increase the rate of success in investigating and prosecuting sexual assault and domestic violence cases. This workshop will present an on-demand roll call training series on trauma-informed practices, produced by the Institute for Coordinated Community Response in 2021. To model how these videos can be used within agencies, the presenters will screen the five-part video series and facilitate group discussion throughout.
CASE STUDY: U.S. vs Alston Williams: Using a Multidisciplinary Approach to Commercial Sex Trafficking - Peter Angell, Jennifer Howard, Carlos Lisboa, Gregory Schiller
Peter Angell, Jennifer Howard, Carlos LisboaGregory Schiller
In late November 2017, the Palm Beach County Human Trafficking Task Force responded to an outcry from a female trafficking victim who stated that she and other young women were being forced to engage in commercial sex and labor across Florida at the direction of a violent trafficker. An investigation revealed that, for 12 years, Alston Williams recruited troubled juvenile females into his home, promising love, shelter, and a family environment. Williams used mental and emotional abuse, along with severe physical violence, to control and exploit his victims. This case study will not only examine the best practices for a successful trafficking investigation and prosecution, but will provide attendees sound analytical approaches and tools, trial strategies, and tips for strong victim advocacy throughout the pre- and post-trial stages of the case.
Understanding the Experiences & Needs of Older Survivors of Domestic & Sexual Violence (Lunch Session) - Bethany Backes, Maggie McGiffert, Julie Olomi, Leila Wood
Bethany Backes, Maggie McGiffert, Julie Olomi, Leila Wood
The needs of older women who have been victimized often goes overlooked. In response, a study was conducted, aimed at understanding the existing services and needs of women 50 years and older with current and recent experiences of domestic and/or sexual violence. Surveys and stakeholder interviews were used to capture key information from survivors on experiences with COVID-19, health, housing, economic, and safety impacts. The presenters will discuss recent statistical trends related to rates of domestic and sexual violence among older women. How to better engage and support older survivors will also be addressed.
Understanding Risk in Domestic Violence Cases: The Domestic Violence Resource for Increasing Safety & Connection - Danielle Pugh-Markie, Carvana Cloud, Robyn Mazur
Danielle Pugh-Markie, Carvana Cloud, Robyn Mazur
Siloed criminal justice, civil, legal, and community stakeholder approaches to survivor safety and offender accountability have led to gaps and lack of information sharing and coordination, hampering a community’s response to domestic violence homicide prevention. Validated risk/lethality assessment tools and domestic violence high risk teams can facilitate more informed decision-making in domestic violence cases and greater safety for survivors and their families. However, jurisdictions need to understand the context in which the homicide prevention strategy would take place in the larger coordinated community response to domestic violence. This workshop will describe guiding principles and resources available to communities through the Center for Court Innovation’s Domestic Violence Resource for Increasing Safety and Connection, a national resource center designed to help jurisdictions enhance their approaches to reducing risk and preventing homicide; providing multidisciplinary community readiness tools, training, and technical assistance to communities working to identify and implement homicide prevention strategies.
Using Code Enforcement to Address Human Trafficking - Dennis Domagas
Certain types of businesses, such as massage parlors and bars, have become an important element in the business model for prostitution and human trafficking. Pimps and human traffickers are opening businesses disguised as legitimate establishments, allowing them to operate out in the public, next to legitimate businesses and imbed themselves in our communities. Unfortunately, there are times that, due to limited resources, manpower, and time, traditional forms of law enforcement have had difficulties in dealing with these illicit businesses. Fortunately, in these criminals’ efforts to disguise their criminal enterprise as a legitimate business, they have left themselves vulnerable to the issues and expenses that every legitimate business has to deal with: Regulations and code enforcement. The presenter will review the legislative remedies available to confronting businesses that serve as a front for exploiting victims.
Using Creative Program Development to Address Unique Challenges When Working with Survivors of Sex Trafficking & CSE - Jessica Brazeal
There are key considerations to account for when providing programming to adult survivors of sex trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation. Women seeking services due to their experiences often have a background of extensive child abuse, a significant history with domestic violence and substance abuse, often lack high levels of formal education, and are looking to move into conventional employment while having a criminal record due to their experiences in the sex industry. The combination of these factors can create unique challenges to account for and address within the development of effective programming structure and content that will allow women to be successful, make meaningful progress, and ultimately achieve the life and goals they choose for themselves. This workshop will explore how to account for all of these factors to allow for program development that is trauma-informed, culturally sensitive, and achievement-based.
Using Forensic Nurses & SART Team Members as Expert Witnesses in Sexual Violence Cases - Kim Nash, Patti Powers
Kim Nash, Patti Powers
Sexual violence cases often present evidentiary questions and issues that are not easily understood without the assistance of a professional with specialized knowledge, training, and/or experience. This can involve challenges to understanding the presence or absence of evidence or injury, as well as the effects of trauma and the range of individual responses to sexual violence. Experienced professionals can provide judges and juries with the necessary context to ensure that they are making informed decisions based on the evidence and prevent misconceptions from negatively impacting the outcome of a case. The presenters will summarize the law related to the introduction of expert testimony and highlight if and when to introduce expert testimony in a case. The presenters will also discuss strategies for the identification and qualification of experts, as well as the importance of working with experts to prepare a case for trial even if their testimony won’t be introduced.
Using NamUs to Resolve Missing Persons & Unidentified Remains Cases - Donia Slack, Mike Nance
Donia Slack, Mike Nance
The National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) is a national information clearinghouse and resource center for missing, unidentified, and unclaimed person cases across the United States. Funded and administered by the National Institute of Justice and managed through a contract with RTI International, NamUs provides forensic and analytical services at no cost to law enforcement, medical examiners, coroners, and allied forensic professionals, and assists family members of missing persons. The NamUs program has been in a transitionary period over the past year and has exciting new processes and services to share with the community. This workshop will provide participants with an overview of NamUs, describe enhancements to the program, and explain how users can utilize NamUs forensic and analytical services in support of missing, unidentified, and unclaimed persons cases.
Utilizing Specialty Domestic Violence Courts as a Coordinated Community Response - Brandy Dailey, Ashley Walker
Brandy Dailey, Ashley Walker
Domestic Violence Specialty Courts are being implemented throughout Arkansas thanks to legislation that was passed in 2020. These specialty court programs are considered accountability courts for their emphasis on victim safety and offender accountability. Each program has specially trained judges, prosecutors, public defenders, victim advocates, and dedicated batterer intervention programs as part of their list of stakeholders. These programs work as a hub for primary prevention efforts within the community and utilize available administrative data to track their impact. The presenters will introduce and discuss how domestic violence specialty courts can be utilized as coordinated community response. This workshop will feature the pilot program in Arkansas, review the various domestic violence court models, discuss the challenges of working with criminal justice stakeholders, and identify strategies to adapt this model to both rural and urban communities.
COMPUTER LAB: VINELink: Bridging the Gap for Victims Through Technology - Karen Adams, Missy Young
Karen Adams, Missy Young
Nationwide, fewer than one in 10 victims of serious violent crime receive assistance from victim service agencies. The VINELink service bridges this gap, enabling victims and survivors to further connect with necessary services using advanced mobile technology. In collaboration with criminal justice agencies, VINELink leverages computer and mobile app technology, housing incarceration data, and service provider resources. VINELink is a valuable tool used by victims, advocates, law enforcement, and other concerned citizens to view offender custody status information and receive timely notifications. This hands-on computer lab will showcase how VINE provides service providers and law enforcement with the appropriate tools to better assist victims of crime. Attendees will be allowed to search for offender custody status and court case information, register for real-time, automated custody status and court case notifications, and access VINE’s new, interactive feature, “I NEED GUIDANCE” tool, connecting victims to local and national service providers, using intuitive questions.
Violence Against Women: Debunking the Myths Surrounding Traumatic Brain Injury & PTSD - Bridget Ryan
The occurrence of post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury are not uncommon diagnoses among military members. The presenter will explore the use of these diagnoses as “defenses” in sexual assault and domestic violence trials and mitigation in sentencing. This workshop will highlight multi-disciplinary approaches as each part of the system including first responders, detectives, prosecutors, advocates, mental health providers and probation & parole can assist in debunking the beliefs that either of these diagnoses are causes of domestic violence and sexual assault. In addition, best practices for defending against the use of these diagnoses in the mitigation phase of sentencing will also be discussed.
“Well, What Was She Wearing?”: Dealing with Problematic Questions Using Expert Witness Testimony - Ruth Guerreiro, Sara Barnett, Jordyn Lawson
Ruth Guerreiro, Sara Barnett, Jordyn Lawson
Survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault often find themselves willingly or unwillingly involved with the justice system and in many domestic violence and sexual assault cases, a witness’ behavior can be counterintuitive or confusing. Having an expert witness testify in criminal or family court can help judges and juries make informed rulings, particularly in cases where a victim’s conduct is not what is traditionally expected. Throughout this mock trial workshop, attendees will discover the benefits of utilizing an expert witness, as well as instructions on how to prepare for using or providing expert witness testimony. Prosecutors and family law attorneys can explore strategies on utilizing an expert in trial while advocates, nurses, and therapists can hone their abilities to provide this critical service for their clients.
CASE STUDY: When Darkness Comes to Light: State vs. Jeremy Fenney - Coreen Schnepf
Jeremy Fenney kidnapped, raped, tortured, and abused women that he sexually exploited for money, power, and control. As many investigators and prosecutors can attest, these type of severe cases of psychological and physical abuse can render a victim voiceless with the expectation of working with a potential uncooperative witness. Because of this grim possibility, essential steps were taken to provide resources for long-term treatment through the criminal justice system to create a path for cooperation in the prosecution and exit from a life of prostitution and abuse. This case study explores the long-term commitment and effort of a successful investigation and prosecution in a human trafficking case that resulted in a 340–year prison sentence for the offender.
CASE STUDY: When the Justice System Refuses to Do the Right Thing: The Madison Smith Case - Justin Boardman, Julie Germann, Madison Smith, Mandy Smith
Justin Boardman, Julie Germann, Madison Smith, Mandy Smith
In February 2018, Madison Smith was raped and strangled by a college classmate. The County Attorney labeled the rape as “immature sex”, then declined charges. Later, the offender was charged only with aggravated battery because she didn’t verbally say “no”. The County Attorney refused to talk with experts in the field. Later a law from the 1880’s was located, finding Kansas was one of six states allowing the convening of a Citizen’s Grand Jury. This took two separate petition drives and filings with the court before the grand jury was approved. Unfortunately, the grand jury declined to bring further charges. The presenters will discuss the details of the case, lessons learned, highlight the ways in which rape victims are re-victimized by the criminal justice system and victim’s rights statutes that can’t be enforced. As of this writing the case pushes on and will be updated during the case study.
When Victims of Crime Become Defendants: Should Context Matter? - Mark Wynn
Incarcerated women experience staggering rates of sexual assault and domestic violence across the life span, leading up to the offenses for which they are charged or convicted. What does justice look like when a victim of a crime becomes a defendant? This workshop will inspire professionals in multiple disciplines to more deeply consider the context of possible violations of law committed by crime victims in their responses. The presenter will include information on how trauma, victimization, strangulation, and brain injury, along with sexual assault and domestic violence dynamics, should be considered when responding to possible violations of law by victims of crime to reach more just outcomes.
Window Dressing: The Investigations of Commercial Front Sex Trafficking - Rochelle Keyhan, Joseph Scaramucci
Rochelle Keyhan, Joseph Scaramucci
On the face of it, many businesses look benign, offering legitimate goods and services to consumers, positively interacting with citizens, and earning legal incomes for their families. However, not all business owners are above-board and, unfortunately, people become their product of choice, being bought and sold against their will. The presenters will guide attendees on how to build circumstantial, organized, crime-focused cases against commercial front brothel owners, like illicit massage parlors and cantinas. This workshop will illustrate lessons learned via case studies and recent examples from Texas and other jurisdictions in the U.S. Forms of evidence available via open-source intelligence gathering and civil and criminal remedies available to assist investigations as well as close sex trafficking venues will also be discussed.
Women's Use of Violence: The Impact of Arrest & Conviction - Melissa Scaia
Most victims of battering are not passive when being physically, psychologically, or sexually attacked. Instead, as part of their efforts to cope and survive, many victims resist their assailants by fighting back. Sometimes this resistance involves the use of violence. When states and localities passed DV laws and policies, it increased the numbers of victims being arrested, charged, and convicted for domestic violence-related offenses. Additionally, when victims of battering use violence in self-defense, CCR members often disagree about which interventions are appropriate or fair. Criminal justice interventions need to ensure that victims of battering are not in more danger or in compromising situations as a result of the policies and protocols that were developed to increase their safety. This workshop will focus on the impact that the arrest and conviction have on victims of battering in order to develop criminal justice interventions that are just and enhance victim safety.
Working with Domestic Violence Offenders as Parents in a Group Setting (Lunch Session) - Melissa Scaia
Most traditional parenting curricula seek to get the parent to “do something different”, and yet, many times, is inadequate to address the beliefs held by men who batter and abuse. These curricula often seek to get fathers to change their behaviors without addressing the underlying beliefs that support them. Addressing fatherhood with abusive and violent parents requires a process that seeks to change the underlying beliefs that justify the violent and abusive behaviors. A key method to begin this process is to look at and examine the impacts and effects of the core beliefs related to parenting. This lunch session will help attendees enhance their work with men who batter as parents.
CASE STUDY: “You’ll Give it Up for Him”: Lessons Learned from LGBTQ-Specific Sexual Assault Cold Cases - Patrick Moug, Grace Broughton
Patrick Moug, Grace Broughton
Various motivations exist when an abuser or rapist makes the choice to victimize another person. Trying to change her sexual orientation to please others, ‘Jane’ begins to date ‘Rick’, a neighborhood friend. ‘Jane’ confides in ‘Rick’ that she is gay and wishes to remain platonic friends. After being told this, ‘Rick’ orchestrates a plan which includes having another male sexually assault ‘Jane’ while ‘Rick’ watches. Due to the delay in DNA testing of the victim’s sexual assault kit, it took years to identify the suspects. This cold case study will discuss lessons learned from working sexual assault cold cases where the victims are from the LGBTQ community. The presenters will share what worked and didn’t work to build rapport with the victims, how to investigate and prepare a case where the evidence was over ten years old, and interrogate offenders who sexually assault others due to their sexual orientation.