ICE and Department of Homeland Security notifies law enforcement of victim protection program

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Immigration and Customs Enforcement along with the Department of Homeland Security notified local law enforcement agencies Thursday that there is a program that protects victims of criminal acts conducted by illegal immigrants.

The Victim Notification Program was created 14 years ago to protect victims’ rights, ICE Spokesperson Virginia Kice said.

Though the program is widely unknown. “I don't actually think it's very well known, in fact I'm not sure how you heard about it,” Kice said.

The push for awareness comes from ICE and the Department of Homeland Security wanting local law enforcement agencies to be knowledgeable of the program and offer the service to their citizens.

Kern County Sheriff’s Office replied to the information by placing a link on their homepage for victims to go directly to ICE’s webpage where they can find the notification form to fill out. All victims need to do then is send the form in.

“Anything we can do to help protect the public, particularly victims and witnesses, we're always excited about getting involved in anything that allows us to do our job better,” KCSO Public Information Officer Ray Pruitt said.

Kice says victims can also reach out by calling ICE’s office. Once victims have registered, they will be notified when the person is released and whether they were deported.

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