Bereavement is always a painful experience. If you lose someone close to you because of a violent crime, it can be particularly devastating.
There are many organisations that can offer you support and advice.
Your police contact
After a violent crime, you'll be introduced to a Family Liaison Officer. These are specially trained police officers.
gather information from you and other family members about the person who died
pass your information onto the Senior Investigation Officer
act as a point of contact between you and the Senior Investigation Officer
keep you updated throughout the investigation
- help with immediate tasks, such as identifying the body
- with your consent, put you in touch with support organisations, like Victim Support Scotland
- give you advice and guidance about the criminal justice system
- help you manage any contact with the media
- help answer any questions you may have
Victim Information and Advice
If the investigation leads to criminal charges, you may be introduced to a Victim Information and Advice officer.
They'll update you on the progress of the case and help you get in touch with support organisations.
Victim Support Scotland can help support people bereaved and affected by murder.
Your Family Liaison Officer can put you in touch with a local Victim Support Scotland office. Or you can contact Victim Support Scotland directly.
They can give you:
- emotional support – giving access to counselling or support groups
- practical support – helping with housing arrangements or taking you to the police station
- support at court – arranging somewhere private for you to arrive or wait for a hearing
Petal – people experiencing trauma and loss
Phone: 01698 324 502
Petal support families and friends of murder and suicide victims through telephone counselling. They provide a drop-in centre in Hamilton and outreach programmes in Glasgow and Edinburgh.
Cruse Bereavement Care Scotland
Phone: 0808 802 6161
Monday to Thursday, 9am to 8pm
Friday, 9am to 4pm
Cruse offer one-to-one counselling across Scotland. They give support through their helpline for anyone who has been bereaved.
The Compassionate Friends
Phone: 0345 123 2304 (10am to 4pm and 7pm to 10pm)
Offers support to bereaved parents and their families after the death of a child. The helpline is always answered by a bereaved parent. There's also an online forum where you can speak to other bereaved families.
This information pack includes advice about:
- how the police, Procurator Fiscal and courts work
- some of the arrangements you may have to make, such as registering the death and organising the funeral
- the help and support available to you