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Cole County deputies concerned about group claiming to help abuse victims

Cole County deputies have alerted residents about a group claiming to work with law enforcement to help those abused.

Deputies said Guardians of the Innocent claims to help abused victims, but multiple agencies have never worked with them.

Sheriff John Wheeler said while officers do not doubt the sincerity of the group, they do want it to be known that it takes more than good intentions to deal with abusive situations.

Victim advocacy is a serious subject that could have dire consequences for those involved and could taint a criminal case if not handled properly, deputies said.

Deputies said they work closely with Cole County prosecutors, victims advocates and the rape abuse crisis services. They are professional organizations with counselors that have been specially trained.

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