Bradford R. Fenocchio
PLACER COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY
10810 Justice Center Drive, Suite 240
Roseville, California 95678
For Immediate Release
Date: May 3, 2010
Public Information Officer
Assistant District Attorney
PLACER VICTIM-WITNESS ADVOCATE WINS VOLUNTEER
AWARD FROM CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION ORGANIZATION
Terri Peterson, an advocate for victims and witnesses in criminal abuse cases handled by the Placer County District Attorney’s Office, has been honored for her volunteerism by a local agency dedicated to the prevention of child abuse.
Peterson, a 13-year employee for the District Attorney’s victim-witness program, was one of six people or organizations recognized for volunteer service to the community by KidsFirst, the agency formerly known as the Child Abuse Prevention Council of Placer County.
The awards were presented at a luncheon Friday at Sun City Lincoln Hills in Lincoln.
KidsFirst lauded Peterson for her tireless efforts to assist children and families who have been victimized by crime.
“It is not uncommon for her to be in the office after hours and on weekends, spending many uncompensated hours tending to the needs of victims of crime,” KidsFirst wrote on a special poster that was awarded to Peterson.
“She possesses the innate ability to connect with crime victims. No matter how tired she is or what is going on in her own life, she puts the victims of Placer County first.”
Peterson’s fellow workers in the District Attorney’s Office praised her for frequently going the extra mile for victims and families.
Her supervisor, Coral Boganes, said she has worked with Peterson since 2007 “and in that period of time, she has dedicated 100 percent of her work every single day to the needs of crime victims.”
“She has the ability to prioritize so that everyone, including her co-workers, have their needs met by the end of the day,” Boganes said.
Angela Ford, an investigator for the District Attorney, recalled how Peterson helped a teenage boy whose parents were murdered by a man who then committed suicide.
“This particular child loved to play the piano,” Ford said. “(Terri) arranged for a moving company to come get the grand piano and store it until the new family of this child could make room for it.”
Ford said the boy also had a dog.
“Terri made sure the SPCA kept the dog alive until a new home could be found for it,” she said.
Mikey Irwin, a fellow advocate in Peterson’s office, said Peterson once had a victim who owned horses.
“On her own time, Terri went to the victim’s home, took care of the horses and mucked out the barn,” Irwin said.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Jeff Wilson said Peterson has an innate ability to connect with victims of crime.
“She has sacrificed her personal time on countless occasions to be of service to them,” Wilson said. “She provides them with her personal cell phone number so that they can contact her anytime during the day or night.
“If 5 o’clock rolls around, she would never leave a victim. She will stay with them until she is no longer needed.”
James Patterson, another advocate in the office, said, “Terri carries the burdens of crime victims when they can’t carry that load themselves.”
“She comforts those who most (people) would rather shun away,” he said. “She patiently answers all of their questions, guides them through the legal system and makes sure they know that they are supported.”
Others who were honored at KidsFirst’s 12th annual awards luncheon were adult volunteer Laurie Tyrrell, who has fostered 72 children since 1994; teen volunteers Dalton Dyer of Placer High School in Auburn and Emily Mattevi of Del Oro High School in Loomis; the Kiwanis Family House in Sacramento, and the Granite Bay chapter of the National Charity League, Inc., a mother-daughter philanthropic organization.
More information about the award winners and about KidsFirst can be obtained by visiting www.kidsfirstnow.org.