Cross Recognized with the Unsung Heroes Award
The Office of the Attorney General observes National Crime Victims’ Rights Week each year with its Unsung Heroes awards ceremony, recognizing outstanding service and support to victims of crime in the Commonwealth. Attorney General Herring established these awards in 2017 to acknowledge those individuals across the state working tirelessly to aid victims in their recovery and healing, promote trauma-informed responses, challenge permissive or dismissive attitudes towards victims’ issues, and affect change.
“This morning, we honored eleven Virginians, who have dedicated their time and efforts to supporting victims’ services, but who oftentimes go un-thanked, with the Unsung Heroes Award,” said Attorney General Herring. “These incredible men and women have gone above and beyond to provide victims with a safe space and the support that they deserve. Each of today’s recipients has given immeasurable comfort and help to victims or survivors, especially when they may feel lost or alone. It is my honor to recognize these remarkable Virginians and thank them for their unwavering dedication to this critical work.”
Across the state, there are individuals doing critical, life-saving work with and on behalf of crime victims, work that often goes unrecognized. Virginia’s “Unsung Heroes” serve victims in many capacities: as officers responding to service calls, as advocates helping victims navigate the court system, as volunteers answering hotline calls, as survivors telling their stories so that others feel less alone. Attorney General Herring honors selected individuals, nominated by their peers, each April.
On April 21, 2021, Detective Cross was recognized as a recipient of the Unsung Heroes award for her work with the Radford City Police Department. Cross is known for building relationships with victims and fostering a safe environment for victims following a crime.
Cross has been a police officer since 2005 and has been working in the Criminal Investigations Bureau at the Radford City Police Department since 2010. As a detective, she has primarily worked child abuse and sexual assault cases for over 8 years. Detective Cross also serves as the coordinator for Radford Police Department’s Lethality Assessment Program, collaborating with the Women’s Resource Center on advocate training. She has also served as a member of her region’s multi-disciplinary team for child abuse and coordinating council since 2010. Laura Beth Weaver, Executive Director of the Women’s Resource Center said, “The Unsung Hero award is well deserved by Detective Cross and we applaud and appreciate her efforts on behalf of victims of violence in the City of Radford. The Women’s Resource Center is grateful for the tireless efforts of Detective Cross and her partnership in our work towards a community free of
sexual and domestic violence.”
Detective Cross said, “This is an incredible honor to receive for a job I love. I am fortunate to work in a community that I care deeply about with an amazing team of professionals. Trauma does not end with a police report or trial and it is important to advocate for victims through the justice system and beyond. It takes all of us to make a difference. I am so proud to work for and with our community to help victims become survivors.”
“Detective Cross works tirelessly on behalf of victims of crime. She goes above and beyond to support victims during their darkest times. The Victim Witness Program appreciates all her hard work and dedication,” said Sarah Akers Campbell, Victim Witness Director.
“I would like to thank Attorney General Mark Herring and his team for recognizing the hard work of Detective Cross. Detective Cross has a passion for serving her community and ensuring that all victims are treated with the highest levels of dignity and respect. Detective Cross is highly respected for her work and often called upon to assist in some of the most complex cases here in the New River Valley. We are proud of Detective Cross and very fortunate to have her on our team here at the Radford City Police Department” states Chief Jeff Dodson