Here’s an easy to understand picture that shows you how to get ready to be a witness. The steps are explained underneath the picture.
- You tell someone about what happened to you or what you saw happen to someone else.
- You make a video or written statement to the Police.
- The Police find out about the case and talk to the person you have told them about.
- The Police charge the person you have told them about and the case is sent to the court. If the person admits to breaking the law the case will go straight to sentencing (step 12). Otherwise it goes to trial or to a defended hearing (step 8).
- PRE-TRIAL HEARINGS and DEPOSITIONS These happen at the court. Usually kids don’t go to these.
- The Police talk to you about how you are going to give your evidence. (The mode of evidence.)
- The Victim Adviser tells you all about going to court.
- TRIAL or DEFENDED HEARING Where everyone tells their piece of the story. Where you will go as a witness.
- Not guilty verdict.
- Guilty verdict.
- SENTENCING When the judge decides the punishment, a few weeks after the trial.
- Victim Advisor explains about the verdict and you can talk to them about how you feel about what happened at court.