The Special Victims/Domestic Violence Bureau is responsible for the investigation and prosecution of cases involving domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse. Our mission is to aggressively pursue justice on behalf of our most vulnerable victims while also being sensitive to the unique issues and dynamics associated with these crimes.
The bureau, led by Chief Lynette M. Reda, has a dual mission: to prosecute offenders and to prevent them from harming the victim in the future. In contrast to other crimes, these cases require more time and attention from prosecutors because the victims may be frightened or reluctant to report to law enforcement or provide testimony. These cases are prosecuted through a multi-disciplinary team approach designed to minimize the trauma suffered by the victim.
The Special Victims/Domestic Violence Bureau is responsible for the prosecution of all cases arising between domestic and intimate partners (crimes occurring between spouses, ex-spouses, family members who live together and intimate relationships). Assistant District Attorneys assigned to the Special Victims/Domestic Violence Bureau carry a caseload involving any combination of the following offenses: assault, burglary, robbery, criminal contempt, endangering the welfare of a child, unlawful imprisonment, intimidating a victim/witness, menacing, criminal mischief, and stalking. Our prosecutors work to secure orders of protection to prevent the defendant from having further contact with the victim.
The bureau is also responsible for the investigation and prosecution of all crimes against children, including physical and sexual abuse. The office also handles cases involving child pornography or defendants using the Internet and social media to solicit explicit photos and/or arrange sexual encounters with underage victims.
Assistant District Attorneys assigned to this bureau are responsible for the prosecution of all rape and sexual assault cases. Our prosecutors work with our partners in law enforcement to investigate human trafficking-related crimes. Prosecutors assigned to sex crime cases have extensive experience and specialized training to work with those who have been victimized and to achieve justice for survivors of sexual assault.
Assistant District Attorneys assigned to the Special Victims/Domestic Violence Bureau receive specialized training and appear in city, town and village courts. Our prosecutors also staff several Office of Court Administration specialty courts, including the Domestic Violence Part in Buffalo City Court, the Erie County Court Felony Domestic Violence Court and the State Integrated Domestic Violence (IDV) Court. These prosecutors are assisted by specially trained advocates and social workers that work with victims to address their specific needs and help to ensure their safety.