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Victims of Crime receives 4K claims in Las Vegas shooting

Updated December 12, 2017 - 7:25 pm

Nevada Victims of Crime program has received 4,013 claims related to the Oct. 1 Las Vegas shooting as of Monday.

A total of 2,392 state victim of crime applications were approved in all of fiscal year 2016, according to a 2016 federal performance measures report.

The program is used to pay for several services, including medical bills, funerals and counseling related to a crime that occurred in Nevada. Fund payouts are capped at $35,000 per individual, but it only issues cash in the case of lost wages and for reimbursable expenses, program manager Rebecca Salazar said. Anybody who was a victim of a crime that occurred in Nevada is eligible to apply regardless of where they live.

Nevada’s program fund had about $12 million in it as of mid-October and $11.4 million as of Thursday. Salazar estimated Tuesday during a State of Nevada Board of Examiners meeting that the cost of total claims relating the Oct. 1 shooting will be at least $14 million over the lifetime of a claim, which could be over several years.

Salazar said she is hoping to get “full reinbursement” from the federal office for victims of crime.

Salazar said new applications are arriving daily. So far 57 claims have been for homicide, and more than 1,500 have been for post-traumatic stress disorder.

In November, the Review-Journal contacted the 14 state victims-of-crime programs where the 58 killed in the shooting were from, and equivalent programs in two Canadian provinces.

A representative for California’s victims-of-crime program said the state is augmenting Nevada’s program, and representatives in Pennsylvania and New Mexico said they “potentially” would be able to augment Nevada’s program. All other states contacted said they would not augment the program, citing state laws.

A representative for the victim compensation program in British Columbia, Canada, said it will not augment Nevada’s compensation program, and a representative of Alberta’s victim compensation program could not be reached for comment.

“It would be wonderful if more states augmented Nevada’s VOC,” Salazar said Thursday. “However, each state has its own guidelines and we work within those. For instance, the majority of compensation programs help victims with crimes that occur in their own states.”

Contact Nicole Raz at nraz@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4512. Follow @JournalistNikki on Twitter.

Recent victims’ aid efforts by Las Vegas Review-Journal on Scribd

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