State and local police are responsible for the criminal investigation. Their role is to interview witnesses and suspects, collect evidence, apprehend perpetrators, and assist in their prosecution. The law enforcement officer is from the location where the alleged incident occurred.
Dept. of Children and Families (DCF)
DCF is the state agency responsible for protecting children from abuse and neglect. The role of the DCF investigator is to assess issues regarding safety and protection of children. His/her job is to make sure children are protected, and to develop safety and service plans for families.
State’s Attorney’s Office
The primary role of the State’s Attorney is to prosecute criminal cases. When an application for a warrant is submitted to the State’s Attorney’s Office by law enforcement, the State’s Attorney will review many factors, including the age and maturity of the child and their ability to testify in court, medical evidence, whether the suspect has confessed, and if there are any witnesses, before deciding how to proceed.
The advocate’s primary responsibility is to provide information and support to the child and the non-offending parent or caretaker. The advocate can provide crisis intervention and crisis counseling for victims and non-offending family members, as well as providing follow-up with appropriate referrals for therapy, medical support, and general assistance. The advocate can also provide on-going support for the family, including legal and medical support and preparation. The advocate believes that parents who are supported will, in turn, support their children.
Mental Health Services
Therapy and clinical services for children and their families are available through the Child Guidance Clinic at United Services, Inc. Please call their intake office in Columbia (serving the Willimantic area) at (860) 228-4480 or in the Dayville area at (860) 774-2020 for more information.