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Mesa Family Advocacy Center

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Main Phone Number: 480-644-4075

The Mesa Family Advocacy Center: Where police and social workers, Department of Child Safety, Office of Child Welfare Investigations, prosecuting attorneys and on-site physicians work together to reduce the trauma of physical and sexual abuse - where victimization is transformed into empowerment.

As the lead agency for the Mesa Family Advocacy Center, the Mesa Police Department has designed a unique, community-oriented, collaborative approach to investigating and intervening in adult and child sexual and severe physical abuse cases. Our detectives are specifically trained to be sensitive to, and knowledgeable of, the trauma of cases of sexual and severe physical abuse of adults and children.

The Mesa Family Advocacy Center operates as a multi-disciplinary team to provide a coordinated, trauma-informed response to victims of sexual and domestic violence. The Mesa Police Department works in partnership with the Office of Child Welfare Investigations, Honor Health, Phoenix Children’s Hospital, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, victim advocates and other community agencies in one location provide a single point of contact for victims of sexual and domestic violence. Our services are free of charge and include forensic examinations, victim advocacy, counseling and connection to community resources.

The Mesa Family Advocacy Center’s Victim Services Unit provides a variety of services for victims of crime and their families including: crisis intervention, criminal justice advocacy, protective order assistance, safety planning, Victims’ Rights information, connection to community resources, and information to reduce the impact of criminal victimization.

In response to enacted legislation, detectives and staff at the Center are also responsible for notifying the community about the release of convicted sex offenders.

The Problem in the United States

  • Each year, there are more than 320,000 victims who are age 12 or older, of rape and sexual assault in the United States.1
  • There were 676,000 estimated victims of child abuse and neglect.2
  • An estimated 1,750 children died from abuse and neglect in 2014.2
  • Elder abuse affects an estimated 5,000,000 people each year.3

Partners at the Mesa Family Advocacy Center

The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office and the City of Mesa Prosecutor's Office have jointly committed to participate in the efforts of the Mesa Family Advocacy Center to improve the prosecution of misdemeanor and felony cases involving adult and child sexual and physical abuse. Additionally, the County Attorney's Victim/Witness Bureau and the City of Mesa Prosecutor's Office Victim Services Unit provide criminal justice and emotional support to victims throughout the court process.

Phoenix Children’s Hospital provides on-site medical services, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at the Mesa Family Advocacy Center for child physical and sexual abuse victims. The Mesa Family Advocacy Center provides a comforting, nurturing environment where medical examinations are conducted in a non-threatening, confidential setting. The medical evaluation involves forensic specimen retrieval and testing for sexually transmitted diseases, in addition to a thorough physical examination of the patient.

The Forensic Nurse Examiner from Honor Health provides medical & forensic examinations for older children and adult victims.

The Arizona Department of Economic Security - Department of Child Safety, Office of Child Welfare Investigations, along with the Mesa Police Department Victim Services, provides on-site services and immediate intervention to victims of sexual abuse and severe physical abuse. Working with the courts, the medical system and the police department, Department of Child Safety, Office of Child Welfare Investigations and Victim Services reflect the integrative approach that is the hallmark of the Mesa Family Advocacy Center.

San Tan Behavioral Health provides trauma-informed therapy services for victims and their families who receive services at the Mesa Family Advocacy Center.

The Community Alliance Against Family Abuse (CAAFA) provides lay legal advocacy services for victims of domestic and sexual violence including protective orders and family court assistance, as well as support groups for victims and survivors of sexual and domestic violence.

Eve’s Place provides advocacy services, shelter assistance and support groups for victims and survivors of domestic and sexual violence.

If you have questions regarding the Mesa Family Advocacy Center or the services that are provided at our facility, please contact Lt. Andrew Nesbit or Lt. Dom Sterlin.

 

References

1 Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Crime Victimization Survey, 2010-2014 (2015).

2 U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau. (2018). Child maltreatment 2016. Available from https://www.acf.hhs.gov/cb/research-data-technology/statistics-research/child-maltreatment.

3 National Center on Elder Abuse, The Elder Justice Roadmap, (Washington, DC: Administration on Aging, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2014), https://www.justice.gov/file/852856/download