Witness Relocation Program
The Asset Forfeiture & Money Laundering Section Chief also administers the Office’s Witness Relocation Program. In 2002, the Office of Attorney General established a Witness Relocation Program for witnesses and their immediate household members who are threatened as a result of testifying in a felony case utilizing grant funds provided by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency and the US Department of Justice’s, Office of Justice Programs. Thereafter, in July of 2005, the Pennsylvania Legislature agreed to continue the Program by funding the Witness Relocation Program in the Attorney’s General operating budget.
The Program assists all law enforcement agencies across the Commonwealth in the relocation of witnesses and their families, when necessary. While the referring agency determines the need for relocation, this Office has final authority to determine entry into the Program. The criminal prosecution remains with the initiating agency and the District Attorney’s Office. The Program provides for both short and long-term housing; the actual costs of relocation such as rent, truck rental, and subsistence; as well as assistance with school and housing voucher transfers. Participation in the Program is strictly voluntary by the witness, however, the Office may terminate a witness’s participation if agreed upon rules are violated during the relocation process.
Entry into the Program is initiated by the completion of three forms, completed and signed by the witness and a representative of the District Attorney’s Office, and sent to this office for approval. The forms are available by contacting the Chief of the Asset Forfeiture & Money Laundering Section of the Office of Attorney General.