The Domestic Violence Unit of the Lackawanna County District Attorney’s Office was created in 1995 to put an end to family violence in our community. The Domestic Violence Unit is staffed with two specially trained assistant district attorneys (ADAs), a domestic violence coordinator, a victim witness advocate, and one support staff member. The Unit is supervised by First Assistant District Attorney Gene Riccardo. The primary purpose of the Domestic Violence Unit is to treat domestic and family violence as a crime and insure the safety of victims and children affected by Domestic Violence.
Assistant District Attorneys are committed to the professional and comprehensive investigation and prosecution of family violence with focus on victim safety and offender accountability. Working in partnership with local police departments and with the state police, each case is handled by an ADA who will review the case in detail and be assured that every standard has been met for complete investigation and prosecution.
Other victim safety initiatives at no cost to the victim include: lethality assessments, temporary safe housing, assistance in comprehensive protection orders, trauma counseling services, and accountability of the batterer through referrals to batterers intervention programs.
The Domestic Violence Unit recognized the need for a multidisciplinary response to domestic and family violence. The Lackawanna County Domestic Violence Task Force through a collaborative effort with the District Attorney’s Office, Women’s Resource Center, Northeast Legal Services, Area Agency on Aging, Children and Youth Services, and local probation and parole has developed a county wide Domestic Violence Protocol. The principal purpose of the protocol is to establish guidelines to be followed by police officers and other personnel involved in response to domestic violence calls. Report Domestic and Family Violence to Police. If the situation is an emergency, CALL 911. Police will: protect you from immediate danger and help you and your children get out of the house safely; arrest the abuser when there is probable cause to believe that an assault has taken place or that the abuser has violated a Protection from Abuse Order; and will advise you of available shelter. If the situation is not an emergency, contact the District Attorney’s Office (Domestic Violence Unit) or Women’s Resource Center for more information.
For more information contact:
Deputy District Attorney Gene Riccardo
Domestic Violence/Sexual Abuse Coordinator:
Phone: (570) 963-6717