Crime victims get more, easier assistance under revised compensation program

1 month 2 weeks 5 days ago Wednesday, August 29 2018 Aug 29, 2018 Wednesday, August 29, 2018 1:47:00 PM CDT August 29, 2018 in News
By: Matthew Judy
loading

JEFFERSON CITY - A house bill reforming the Department of Public Safety's Crime Victims' Compensation Program took effect Tuesday.

The program, which provides compensation to victims of violent crime, has existed since 1982. Last year, it compensated Missouri victims with more than $5 million.

The reform, which was passed by a 133-15 vote in the House, provides updates aimed at making it easier for victims to apply for the program.

“These changes will significantly ease the burden victims must meet in order to apply for compensation and make more people eligible to receive reimbursement for the expenses they experience as a result of crime,” Sandra Karsten, acting director of Department of Public Safety said in a statement Wednesday.

Program Manager Katrina Prenger echoed Karsten's sentiment.

"These changes are really exciting. They've made some great opportunities for our applicants to ease the process for them," Prenger said.

Tyler Rieke, Executive Director of the Coalition Against Rape and Domestic Violence in Fulton, said she is grateful for the reforms.

"These changes are going to open up crime victims compensation to a significantly larger population of victims of crime in Missouri and I know our organization and organizations similar to ours are just elated to have seen these changes come out," Rieke said.

Before the reform, victims had to report the crime within 48 hours, which is no longer the case. The reform also removed the need for notarization of their application, which can be an "extra step" for victims to deal with, Prenger said.

"Now that is no longer necessary so they can email it, fax it or scan it in," Prenger said.

Those eligible for the program can receive assistance with a variety of expenses, including counseling costs and lost wages. Prenger said the updates increase the amount of money the program can reimburse victims for.

"Previously there had been a cap on counseling. The amount of funds that could be reimbursed for counseling expenses," Prenger said. "That has been removed now so that folks who are receiving lengthier counseling, that will add up quickly, can now continue to get counseling reimbursed past the $2500 mark."

Department of Public Safety Communications Director Mike O'Connell said the reform has also expanded who is eligible for compensation.

"If you yourself had been convicted of two felonies within a ten year period and then you yourself were a victim of crime, you were ineligible," O'Connell said. "Those people can now apply and receive benefits, so that's another change to be aware of."

Prenger is confident the changes will be well received.

"I think we are going to hear a lot of positive response. This is going to open up a lot of opportunities for victims to receive some additional assistance that they had not been privy to previously so it's really exciting for us."

More News

Grid
List
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Jurors on Thursday began deliberating the case of two Kansas water park maintenance workers accused... More >>
56 minutes ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 12:39:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Authorities say a man who was in a wheelchair has been found dead in a... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 10:52:34 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say a St. Louis police officer has shot and wounded a suspect during a struggle... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 10:48:28 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
HOUSE SPRINGS, Mo. (AP) — Authorities say it appears that a man was killed after his car fell on top... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 10:35:41 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The former head of USA Gymnastics has been accused of removing documents linked to the Larry Nassar sexual... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 8:56:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - A 78-year-old Fenton man drowned Wednesday afternoon at Lake of the Ozarks. The incident... More >>
5 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 7:39:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Centerpointe Hospital is opening a new location on International Drive in Columbia. The Tennessee-based company has one... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 6:55:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- Facebook has set up a "war room" at its California headquarters as part of its plans to avoid... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 6:32:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - November candidates want to earn your vote by discussing disability-related issues on Thursday. The City of Columbia... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 3:49:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - The man killed in a helicopter crash east of Fulton on Wednesday has been identified as Charles... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 8:14:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
GASCONADE COUNTY - A school in Gasconade County went on lockdown on Wednesday after a juvenile threatened to self-harm nearby,... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 7:39:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia City Council approved a request on Monday to change the zoning of nearly 50 properties in... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 6:33:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- Andy Neidert's building on the corner of East High Street and Madison Street has been collapsing and held... More >>
21 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:47:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
PANAMA CITY, Fla. - A former Missouri woman, now living in Florida's panhandle, said Wednesday she is experiencing the "catastrophic"... More >>
21 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:41:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Claire McCaskill's office has responded to a investigative piece by Project Veritas,which focuses on her campaign office. ... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:24:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- A white woman has been fired after video emerged of her confronting and blocking the entry of a... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:23:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Robert Pinhero created a GoFundMe page and is recruiting drivers to help get voters without a car... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 2:58:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
Cole County – From oil-dripping trucks to ones without seatbelts, Cole County Fire District officials say there's a pressing need... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 2:38:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 59°
2pm 58°
3pm 61°
4pm 60°
5pm 60°