National Crime Victims’ Rights Week 2017
As the nation’s first and largest victim compensation program, the California Victim Compensation Board (CalVCB) observes National Crime Victims’ Rights Week from April 2–8.
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It was 23 years ago when Regina Rutherford decided to move out of her Ventura home just days after her then-husband shot her in the hand during an argument. Days after the March 1994 shooting that shattered the bones in her right hand, Rutherford said, she was determined to leave the abusive relationship and find a safe place for herself and her 5-year-old daughter.
Imagine installing a wheelchair ramp into your home beca=use injuries from a violent crime left you permanently disabled. Imagine requiring years of expensive mental health treatment because you relive a violent crime in your mind on a daily basis.
Before she became the advocate she is today for families of homicide victims in Alameda County, Marilyn Washington Harris experienced her own profound loss: the murder of her only son, Khadafy Washington, nearly 17 years ago on the streets of Oakland.
California Victim Compensation Board Executive Officer Julie Nauman said the annual observance provides an opportunity to share with the public benefits that her agency offers and the strides California has made to protect victims’ right.
A young woman sitting on the stand in SLO County Superior Court speaks so softy she can barely be heard. She casts her eyes down at the carpeted floor of the courtroom and tells a room full of strangers about the four days she spent as a teenage sex slave, being coerced into having sex with a man named Richard Scott Brooks.
For many crime victims and their families, the California Victim Compensation Board is the last hope to cover crime-related expenses such as medical and mental health treatment, dental costs, home and vehicle modifications, and more.