Eric Hance, Prosecuting Attorney for Arkansas’ 16th Judicial District, has announced the establishment of two additional Victims Assistance offices and the hiring of three new Victims Assistance Coordinators.

The 16th Judicial District’s Victims Assistance Program provides advocacy and support for victims of crime and serves Cleburne, Fulton, Independence, Izard and Stone counties.

The existing Victims Assistance office is in Batesville. The new offices are in Stone and Cleburne counties. Veronica Gray operates the Stone county office in Mountain View and Brooke Hipp, the Cleburne county office in Heber Spring. Susan Porter will oversee Fulton, Independence and Izard counties from the Batesville office.

Gray was born and raised in south Mississippi and moved to Mountain View in 2004. She fell in love with the community and decided it would be a good place to raise her children. In 2010, Gray became a volunteer at Stone County Abuse Prevention. She was soon hired as advocate and was eventually promoted to shelter manager. She is a former board member of Arkansas Legal Aid, Youth for Christ in Gulfport, MS and Fatherless and Widows in Long Beach, MS. 

Hipp is the VAC for Cleburne County. She was born and raised in a small town near West Memphis. Hipp moved to Heber Springs in 2004 and fell in love with the beauty of the area. She married and started her family in Heber Springs. In 2010, she began working for a private attorney and there, gained knowledge of domestic and criminal law.

Porter is a native of Batesville and a graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City. A former journalist, she founded and operated the Fayetteville Free Weekly newspaper in Fayetteville. She is co-founder of the Washington-Willow Historic District Neighborhood Association in Fayetteville, a founding board member of Spay Arkansas and a former board member of Friends for Fayetteville.

“We are very fortunate to have these individuals who are dedicated to helping crime victims and their families through difficult situations in the 16th Judicial District,” Hance said.