Assault victims often find difficulty reporting the crimes against them

Assault victims often find difficulty reporting the crimes against them

BOWLING GREEN, OH (WTOL) - As a man facing charges in two foot fetish related crimes gets ready to face a Wood County judge, more awareness is coming to those who are the victims of such crimes.

While the charges against Joseph Jones are misdemeanors, Wood County prosecutor Paul Dobson says all types of assault can be traumatizing to their victims. Thus, they are difficult to report.

"Numerous victims that we talk to, understandably, say that they don't want to get on the witness stand and explain that again," Dobson explained. "Who would ever want to?"

Dobson says victims often feel shame themselves, even though it's not their fault it happened. Sometimes that shame causes reporting the crime to be delayed.

"To process and to come to grips enough with what happened tell a stranger, a police officer who's a stranger, or a friend who tells them this shouldn't have happened, you need to tell someone about that," Dobson said. "That takes time."

That is the reason why Dobson believes people who are going to be on a jury should not place an expectation on how an alleged victim on the witness stand will act.

"What they need to do is they need to be made to feel as comfortable and as secure and as protected and as believed as possible," Dobson said. "That's what's needed."

Wood County, along with the city of Bowling Green, offer a victim's advocate to victims of assault. The advocate involves themselves throughout the legal process. They also help the victim get connected to counseling and crime compensation funds to help cover it.

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