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Arrest & Victim of a Crime Protocols

Arrest

Some accommodations can be made, due to an individual’s disability, as allowed by law. Westside Regional Center also collects data for future forensic program planning. Please follow this protocol if your adult or minor consumer is arrested or is a victim of a crime.

Care providers/ family, staff:

1. Inform the arresting officer that…

  • Consumer is a developmentally disabled person with the Westside Regional Center, give name of Service Coordinator and contact number.
  • No consumer should speak with the police unless their attorney is present. Do not allow the consumer to meet or speak with any police official including the arresting officer. Although the police may appear to want to be "helpful" their primary reason for asking questions is, not to "get a better picture" of what happed, but to obtain information with which to charge the client. The police only ask questions when they do not have enough information to make an arrest.
  • Inform the arresting officer of any medical conditions and if the consumer is taking any medication (seizure medication, psychotropic medication for mental illness.) Tell arresting officer that consumer needs to be separated form the general population for safety.
  • Get the arresting officers name, badge number, phone number, arresting agency (City Police, Sheriff) and Arrest Report number. Identify where the officer is taking the consumer for booking. Call or go to police department and ask when consumer will be arraigned.

2. Call Westside Regional Center ASAP/ Immediately and speak to a live person-on-call/ C.O.D. 310-258-4000 to report incident. Give on-call staff information available. DO NOT LEAVE A MESSAGE.

DO NOT LEAVE A VOICE MESSAGE

Westside Regional Center Staff: As soon as you become aware of a consumer being arrested or detained by the police

  • Notify Court & Forensic Specialist, Alejandro Vargas at 310-258-4188 or Court & Forensic Coordinator at 310-258-4118 of arrest and any information about arraignment or hearings. Service Coordinator's can access booking, next hearing date and physical information about your adult consumer at the Los Angeles Sheriff Department (LASD) web site: www.LASD.org and go to the link for the inmate information center (http://pajis.lasd.org/ajis_search.cfm)
  • Adults: Contact, Law Enforcement Liaison, Bob Vargas. Be prepared to give: Consumer name, date of birth, diagnosis, list of any medications or medical conditions that must be monitored. Mr. Vargas will identify consumer to jail and assist with placing consumer in the system/Regional Center module. LEL us 213- 687-8727/ or 213-744-8860.
    • Service Coordinators must be prepared to attend the arraignment hearing and ensure that the court and its officers are informed of the involvement of the Regional Center for purposes of advocacy, possible Regional Center Diversion (penal code 1001.20) or possible services and supports. In certain cases, the Regional Center may assist in cases where competency is an issue per penal code 1368.
  • Minors: Your consumer will be placed in a juvenile hall facility until resolution of the case. Obtain from family or service provider as much information as possible on the charges, court date, etc. No Juvenile Law Enforcement Liaison currently exists to assist in juvenile cases. It will be the responsibility of the service coordinator to work with the family, probation and court system to insure that the consumer’s best interests are being served.If a juvenile is determined by the court as incompetent to stand trial, the Juvenile Protocol for Competency must be followed in which it details the participation of Regional Centers in competency attainment services. Service Coordinator must consult with the Forensic Department for assistance.

It is important that a representative of Westside Regional Center be present at a court appearance. Do not rely on a vendor to represent you. Consult with Alejandro Vargas, Court and Forensic Specialist. He will assist as necessary with all aspects of the criminal court process. In the event he is not available, please consult with WRC Court and Forensic Coordinator.  Follow SIR Protocol to document incident and follow up.

Victim of a Crime Protocol

When a consumer is a victim of a crime:

  • First,  assure Consumers immediate Health and safety. This may mean a report will be taken by police at hospital or other safe location.
  • Family members, vendor staff or Service Coordinators must report crime to the local police. When reporting the crime to the police inform the investigating officer that the Consumer is a developmentally disabled person with the Westside Regional Center, give name of Service Coordinator and contact number. Get the officers name, badge number, phone number and Report number.
  • The victim may be eligible for Victim-Witness Assistance through the District Attorney Office.
  • When the crime is gang-related the victim may be eligible for Criminal Protective Order, relocation assistance or court escort. It is important to assist the consumer in accessing this program to determine eligibility.
  • Follow SIR Protocol to document incident and follow up.

Questions: If you have any questions concerning a consumer being arrested or to report a crime, please contact arresting community police facility.