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Victims of Crime

An Automated Victim Notification System

Crime victims commonly worry about the day when an inmate convicted in their case is released from custody. Women who have been stalked and victimized by boyfriends and former spouses fear that they will return again. Only rarely is the victim promptly notified of an inmate's release. In 1997 the state of Kentucky addressed this problem by introducing the first completely automated victim notification system.

The Kentucky system, called Victim Information and Notification Everyday (VINE)™, is a statewide system that seeks to help crime victims, especially those who have been subjected to DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. The VINE system keeps tabs on inmates in Kentucky's 17 state prisons and 83 county jails.

To obtain information, a person dials a toll-free number and supplies the prisoner's name or prison identification number. A computer then provides information as to where the prisoner is incarcerated, the telephone number and address of the jail or prison, the date of the inmate's next PAROLE hearing, and the date the sentence expires.

In addition, a person may confidentially register with the automated system and request to be notified when an inmate is released. Registered persons automatically receive a telephone call within ten minutes of an inmate's transfer or release, giving them time to take precautions.


"VINE Brochure." Available online at <gov.state.ky.us/domviol/vinebrch.htm> (accessed February 27, 2004).

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Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationFree Legal Encyclopedia: Vest to Water RightsVictims of Crime - Right To Sue, Victim Compensation Laws, An Automated Victim Notification System, Victims' Rights Laws