Shawn Becker

Crime Victim Services Coordinator, Rice County Attorney’s Office

Shawn Becker has been championing positive change over the course of his 16-year career in law enforcement, including eight years as a detective specializing in…

Shawn Becker

Shawn-B-cropped.jpgShawn Becker has 16 years of
experience in law enforcement, including eight years as a detective specializing in
sexual assault investigations. In this role, Mr. Becker educated numerous new police
officers, detectives, prosecutors, community leaders, faith-based leaders, elected
officials, counselors, college students, and other community members on how to respond
to disclosures of sexual assault and abuse.

In 2013, Mr. Becker spearheaded the implementation of the Start by Believing campaign in
Idaho. He provided training to local criminal justice professionals on the impact of
personal biases and rape myths, and how their professional responses can potentially
affect victims. This training was expanded to include the new officers at the Idaho
State Police Academy.

Mr. Becker assisted in the creation of the Start by Believing room at the Canyon County
Sheriff’s Office in Caldwell, Idaho. This is a warm and safe space where detectives,
victim witness coordinators, prosecutors, and victims can meet for interviews and
prepare for court. Other local law enforcement agencies, the prosecutor’s office, social
services providers, and business leaders were also provided with an artistic etching of
the Start by Believing logo to prominently display in their own space.

Through all of his efforts, Mr. Becker has consistently strived to engage community
leaders and other partners. For example, he successfully garnered support for a
county-wide proclamation to Start by Believing in Canyon County, Idaho.

Now Mr. Becker has taken his passion and commitment to Start by Believing to Rice County,
Minnesota, where he serves as the Crime Victim Services Coordinator. He actively
participates in Start by Believing Day activities in Rice County, where he continues to
use his creativity to increase awareness of the impact of victim blaming and rape myths
throughout his new county.

In one particularly unique example, the Rice County Attorney’s Office, the HOPE Center,
and local law enforcement agencies kicked off an event they described as, “Letting the
Air Out of Excuses.” First, a large display case was filled with 1,194 balloons, and
people were encouraged to guess the total number to win prizes.

The contest was designed to draw attention to the messages written on the balloons, which
included:

Why did you go there?

Boys will be boys.

She should have known better.

Next, the balloons were released to visually represent the air being let out of common
excuses and justifications for sexual assault. With creative ideas like this, Shawn
Becker continues to raise awareness about sexual violence and demonstrates the promise
of change and transformation.

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