The Potter County District Attorney’s Office, in conjunction with Potter County Judge Stephen Minor and Victim Witness Coordinator Anita Mead, planted a tree in the courtyard for Crime Victims’ Rights Week (April 19-25), in memory of honor of those who have died and those who continue to persevere.

Andy Watson, district attorney, said they had originally planned several events to honor all crime victims, but the majority had to be canceled due to the coronavirus. One thing that they were able to do was plant the tree.

A young maple tree was donated by the Potter County Victim Impact Panel for the occasion, Mead wrote in a press release. The maple tree was planted on the Courthouse Square by the Potter County maintenance staff and bears a plaque from an anonymous donor with the inscription “Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 19 -25, 2020. In memory and honor of those we have lost as well as those who continue to persevere. Seek Justice, Ensure Victims’ Rights, Inspire Hope.”

“Even with the ongoing crisis, we wish to emphasize how important it is that crime victims are not ‘lost in a bureaucratic shuffle’ and continue to have a voice that is both loudly and clearly heard,” Mead wrote in a press release. “As the plaque says, we will continuously endeavor to seek justice, ensure victims’ rights, and inspire hope.”

Watson said that often, people don’t understand what crime victims go through, from the abuse to the impact it has on a family, especially if small children are involved.