Municipal Court Conference May 9, 2013 Laramie, Wyoming DIVISION OF VICTIM SERVICES Division’s Primary Responsibilities The Division of Victim Services is a division within the Office of the Attorney General. Determine eligibility for crime victims’ compensation Manage state and federal funds granted to local victim service providers Monitor local programs for compliance Provide outreach and education regarding victims’ rights and victim services Victim Service Providers in Wyoming 24 DV/SA providers - 1 in each county and 1 on the WRIR 10 V/W programs in Prosecuting Attorney's Offices 11 V/W Programs in Law Enforcement Agencies 6 Dual DV/SA - VW Programs 2 Independent V/W programs 1 USM, 1 FBI, 1 DOC and 1 BOP 4 CASA Programs 3 Child Advocacy Centers 1 Family Justice Center Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell Be treated with compassion, respect and sensitivity within the criminal justice system. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to know the whereabouts of the offender. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to receive restitution from the offender. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to know all rights under this law, including information about services and victims assistance at the local level. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to know about victims’ compensation. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to reasonable protection and safety and the right to know of legal recourse if threatened. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to prompt return of property. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to preservation of employment while participating in the criminal justice process. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to be informed about the opportunity to make a victim impact statement at sentencing and parole hearings. Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights in a Nutshell The right to be present at trial. Important Statutes Compensation W.S. 1-40-101 et seq. Established the Crime Victim’s Compensation Account Determines who is eligible What will be covered Division of Victim Services W.S. 9-1-638 Established the Division and outlines our duties VICTIM LOSSES Tangible Intangible Property Control Money Self Respect Loved Faith ones Pets Life Trust Freedom VICTIM NEEDS Medical Assistance Venting…to tell their story To feel safe…to be safe To have control over their lives—ability to make decisions Understanding what is happening to them…what will happen next Financial assistance Compensation Crime Victim Compensation Mission: To assist crime victims with out-of-pocket expenses incurred due to crime Program was established for victims who have sustained actual physical harm or actual mental harm because of the criminal act perpetrated against them Definition of a Victim: A person who suffers personal injury or death as a direct result of: Criminal act of another person Attempting to prevent a criminal act, assisting LE Assisting another person or attempting to stop a criminal act Federal Crime Resident killed or injured by an act of terrorism. Compensation Statistics During SFY2012, 566 claims were received in our office 482 claims approved $1,478,745.89 was paid out to crime victims injured in Wyoming $1,178,929.30 Medical/Dental $108,735.39 Mental Health Remainder of funds for: Economic Support, Funeral/Burial, Crime Scene Clean-Up, SANE Exams, and “other” Where Does The Money Come From? Surcharge fees Federal Victims of Crime Act Program Restitution/Recovery from Offenders Compensable Crimes Include: Homicide Kidnapping Sexual Assault Robbery Child Physical Abuse Assault Child Sexual Abuse DUI Indecent Liberties w/a Certain Vehicular minor Domestic Violence Related Crimes Acts of Terrorism on US Soil and Abroad Requirements Crime had to occur in Wyoming Some proof a crime was committed is required Arrest NOT required Prosecution is NOT required Conviction is NOT required Compensable Losses Include: Mental Health Counseling and Care Medical, Dental & Hospital Service Articles Taken As Evidence Out-of-pocket expenses Funeral/Burial Expenses Loss of Earnings Loss of Support for Dependants Mileage Expense to/from medical appointments Victim Bill of Rights W.S. 1-40-203 (D)(iv) states that victim should be informed of the State’s compensation program “To be provided information about compensation available under the Crime Victims Compensation Act as provided in W.S. 1-40-101 through 1-40-119.” Compensation Eligibility Who is eligible Who is not eligible Contributory conduct Crime Reporting Requirements (Eligibility Requirements) Crime should be reported to law enforcement. Some verification that a crime occurred is necessary. The victim suffered physical/mental injury as a result of the criminal act. Victim should cooperate with the investigation and prosecution. Timely Filing Requirements Adult claims must be filed within one year from the date the crime was committed. Children, one year from the date the crime was reported. Exceptions: May be extended for “good cause” Ineligible People who are injured during the commission of a crime People incarcerated or in a community correctional facility at the time of the crime Victims of property crimes People who commit a felony after filing for compensation People who commit a misdemeanor personal crime after filing for compensation People who file a claim after the expiration date Contributory Conduct Reductions From 15% to 85% Reductions are cumulative 50% Violating conditions of bond, probation or parole Knowingly and willingly entering a vehicle driven by an intoxicated person Assisting, attempting to commit or committing a misdemeanor criminal act Driving without a license or under suspension Driving without insurance 25% reduction Provoking the offender in a manner where bodily harm is likely Failure to retreat or withdraw when an option to do so is readily available 15% reduction Use of obscene/fighting words or threatening gestures Poor judgment due to alcohol consumption Victim continues to provoke the offender escalating the situation (i.e. road rage) Denial of Claims Victim was assisting, attempting to commit or committing a felony crime Mutual combat—victim challenges or is challenged to fight and accepts the challenge Victim is incarcerated at the time of the incident Victim was at the time of the crime, under felony indictment Victim is charged with DUI/DWI or Reckless Driving Traffic offenses/ Property Crimes (not eligible) W.S. 1-40-104(b)(i): Police Reports and Records The division is empowered to request access to any reports of investigation, medical records, or other data necessary to assist the division in making a determination of eligibility for compensation. Upon authorization of the Attorney General, law enforcement officials, state agencies, and local government units shall provide assistance or information requested by the division. Compensation Limits $15,000 per claim per victim per crime $4,000 per calendar year for counseling $500 limit on articles taken as evidence $500 limit on crime scene clean-up $1,500 limit on benefits for associated victims $10,000 catastrophic loss (available in some circumstances) Catastrophic Injury W.S. 1-40-102 (c) (xi) Permanent disability of limbs or functions as a result of being a victim of a crime Provides an extra $10,000 to aid the victim for lost wages, special home or vehicle renovations, special home health care, special education or training (not covered by other resources) Appeals The victim may appeal a claim which has been denied or reduced Appeal Process 30 days from the date of the award notice Appeal needs to be in writing Appeal needs to come from the victim/claimant Reviewed and back to victim/claimant in 60 days Division Staff Cara Boyle Chambers, Director Steve Gilmore, Deputy Director Cathy McDonald, Administrative Assistant Jamie Chavez, Special Projects Program Mgr. Jean Courts, Compensation Claims Specialist Nanette Alaniz, Program Manager Kandice Hansen, Program Manager Traci Hodgins, Program Manager CONTACT INFORMATION Cara Boyle Chambers Director, Division of Victim Services Office of the Attorney General 122 West 25th Street Herschler Building, 1st Floor West Cheyenne, WY 307-777-7200 phone 307-777-6683 fax http://victimservices.wyoming.gov THANK YOU!!!!