Victim or witness intimidation is the practice of threatening, harming, or otherwise instilling fear in a victim of, or witness to, a crime, in an effort to prevent him or her from reporting a crime or testifying in court. It may also be used to convince a victim or witness to recant testimony that has already been made. The intimidation may involve physical violence, explicit threats of physical violence, implicit threats, and/or property damage. Threats may be made by the defendant or by his or her friends, family, fellow gang members, or other associates. Most victim and witness intimidation takes place in time either between the defendant's arrest and his or her trial or during the trial, in the courtroom.
Encyclopedia of Race and Crime
Helen Taylor Greene
Shaun L. Gabbidon
Chen, Elsa Y. “Victim and Witness Intimidation.” Encyclopedia of Race and Crime. Editors Helen Taylor Greene and Shaun L. Gabbidon. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications (2009).