Supporters and attendees of an April 26 event to inform and help crime victims gather at the Velocity  center in Sterling Heights.

Supporters and attendees of an April 26 event to inform and help crime victims gather at the Velocity center in Sterling Heights.

Photo provided by the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office

New event offers crime victims support

By: Eric Czarnik | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published May 5, 2024


STERLING HEIGHTS — When crime and injustice wreak havoc, local experts from the legal system and nonprofit groups are available to help victims deal with the aftermath.

That was the purpose of the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office’s recent inaugural event for survivors of crime, which took place April 26 at the Velocity center in Sterling Heights.

The event, titled “Options, Services, and Hope for Crime Survivors,” was overseen by the Prosecutor’s Office’s Crime Victim Rights Unit.

Macomb County Prosecutor Peter Lucido told the Sentry that the event was “the first of its kind” in the county. He added that hundreds of people attended it and learned more about how victims can receive aid and support.

“They had a chance to do face-to-face with these advocates, as well as the service providers, together with resources that are available to continue to walk with them on their journey of healing,” he said.

“The individual service providers made statements that this was not only necessary, but also meaningful to those that became victims of crimes or their families who have to live with the pain each and every day.”

According to organizers, the free public gathering was full of discussions and tips that gave insight into the legal system, and topics included coping strategies, support services, healing, victims’ rights and seeking restitution.

Organizers said experts on hand included assistant prosecuting attorneys, judges, crime victim advocates, guests from nonprofits like Turning Point and Care House, and a Macomb County Sheriff’s Office sergeant.

Lucido said an increase in crime victims motivated his office to organize this initiative. He said that while it ought to have been done in the past, “with a new prosecutor comes new ideas and assistance to those we serve.”

“No one has ever stood up or raised their hand and said they want to be a victim,” Lucido explained.

“Therefore, it’s important that we recognize that when (victims) are found with an unfortunate and unintended experience of suffering, it is the assistant prosecutors who have to prove the case. But even more important, it’s the victim advocates who walk with the victim every step of the way throughout the proceedings, which are foreign to victims. The victim advocates are their guiding light through the criminal justice system.”

In a statement, Nicole Beverly, author of the book “Finding Nicole: A True Story of Love, Loss, Betrayal, Fear and Hope,” thanked the event organizers for holding the event, which gave her a chance to share her account of how being a crime victim affected her life.

“We still have a lot of work to do to protect victims of crimes,” she added. “I hope that the Legislature and judges and others with the power to create change will help us do so.”

Lucido said it’s necessary for victims to talk to others who have been in similar circumstances so they can hear about information and services that have helped them.

“And that’s why this kind of event or this type of event is necessary, as victims have the ability to hear from other victims and service providers to give them the tools that they need and inspiration to recover and take back their life,” he said.

Lucido added that he hopes that this event becomes an annual one during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

According to the Prosecutor’s Office, crime victims may contact the Crime Victim Rights Unit by texting “Victim” to (586) 250-4090 or by calling (586) 469-5675. For other information about the Prosecutor’s Office, visit or call (586) 469-5350.