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January 24, 2014

National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

Henderson County law enforcement joining forces to host conference of East Texas

Athens — Each year since 1981, the Federal Office of Victims (OVC) has designated a “National Crime Victims' Rights Week.”  DeAnna Browning, Crime Victim Coordinator for the Henderson County District Attorney Office said, “The purpose of the NCVRW is to increase awareness of victims rights, honor crime victims and aid those who advocate on their behalf.”

Crime Victims' week this year is slated for April 6 through April 12. The Henderson County District Attorney's Office, Henderson County County Attorney's office, Henderson County Sheriff's Office, Henderson County Help and Child Advocacy Center have joined forces to host the second annual Crime Victims' Conference of East Texas. The conference will be held on April 3 through April 4,  from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Lake Athens Baptist Church.

The theme at this year's conference is “30 Years Restoring The Balance.”

Browning said there will be a full agenda for the conferences, including Dep. James Boyd’s story of surviving a killer’s bullet.

Boyd, 27, pulled over a black Cadillac in Bowie for a simple traffic violation when he encountered suspected murderer Evan Ebel.

“I remember seeing the gun shoot off,” Boyd said. “I would see the cartridges fly out, at which point I blacked out.”

Boyd was hit twice in the chest, and suffered a grazing wound to the head. Ebel was later killed by the Wise County Sheriff's Department.

Boyd will tell his story of survival on Thursday, April 3 at the East Texas Conference.

On Friday, April 4, Jennifer McAlister will tell the law enforcement community about her experience at the Boston Marathon.  McAlister said she could see the finish line. She just had passed mile 26.

McAlister had expected to see her husband cheering for her from the sideline. Instead, a bomb went off. Attendees of the conference will hear how McAlister went from being a victim to a survivor.

The agenda also includes retired District Attorney Mark Yarbrough,  who will talk about dealing with burnout. Hear Yarbrough speak of the symptoms of burnout, which  include: being mad all of the time; being tired all of the time; experiencing a lack of motivation about work or home; feeling worn out; feeling like most of your day is spent on mind-numbingly dull activities; feeling like no one cares what you are doing at work or the job you do; trying to stay away from people; taking longer to get things done; coping with food, alcohol or drugs; taking things out on others; getting in a habit of coming in late or skipping.

Browning said, “What we are looking for now are sponsors from the community to support the conference. For a $250 sponsorship, you will be listed on all publications, conference materials and website.” 

Browning said that this year there will also be T-shirts with sponsors’ names printed on the shirts. To become a sponsor of the Second Annual Crime Victims Conference of East Texas, contact DeAnna Browning, Crime Victim Coordinator, Henderson County District Attorney's Office, 903-675-6100 or

The Crime Victims' Conference is designed for all law enforcement or victim rights personnel. The conference is not open to the general public.

Law Enforcement and victim rights personnel can register at Cost of registration is $20.

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