In 2008, after years of seeing victims repeatedly mistreated and re-victimized by the criminal justice system, a team of victim advocates, prosecutors, and personnel from the Colorado State Department of Public Safety was convened to improve victims’ experiences within the criminal justice system. Based on the team’s recommendation, the Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance (COVA) started a program called the Colorado Crime Victims Legal Clinic. This program grew and, in 2010, became its own nonprofit organization, the Rocky Mountain Victim Law Center (RMvlc).
In 2012, a partnership between RMvlc and the Denver District Attorney’s Office led to the creation of The Legal Information Network of Colorado (LINC) program. LINC was established as one of ten Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) Wraparound Victim Legal Assistance Network (WVLAN) demonstration projects. The LINC model, designed by a collaboration of victim and legal service providers, includes a helpline, website, and network of specially-trained Navigators.
In the fall of 2018, LINC expanded from the Denver-metro area to become a statewide project.
In 2019, Project Attorney Connect (PAC) was added to LINC. Through PAC, RMvlc contracts with private attorneys to provide unbundled legal representation to victims of crime with specific legal needs.
From its inception, RMvlc has received requests for assistance from students who have experienced gender-based violence while at school. These cases, which fall under the legal protections of Federal Title IX, are typically handled as an administrative process by schools, from K-12 and in Higher Education. Often, these victims and survivors are in need of legal information, support, and representation to navigate the school process, access their rights, and ensure they have access to a safe and harassment free education. In 2019 RMvlc started a specific program to address the legal needs of victims in Title IX proceedings.
In addition to the services provided through it’s three programs, RMvlc also provides training and technical assistance to service providers who work with victims of crime.