David B. Fein, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, recently announced that the Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime has awarded the State of Connecticut more than $5.64 million from the Crime Victims Fund for the state victim assistance and compensation programs.
“Victims of crime must never be ignored or forgotten,” U.S. Attorney Fein said. “While it is difficult to make victims whole again, it is gratifying that the hard work of this U.S. Attorney’s Office, the Department of Justice and the federal courts has resulted in the distribution of this substantial amount of money to assist the healing of Connecticut’s victims.”
The Office for Victims of Crime and the Crime Victims Fund were established under the 1984 Victims of Crime Act (VOCA). Through VOCA, federal criminal fines, penalty assessments, and bond forfeitures that are collected by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and U.S. Federal Courts are deposited into the Crime Victims Fund. All states and territories receive annual VOCA grants. More information on the Office for Victims of Crime can be found at www.ovc.gov.
Connecticut’s crime victim assistance program and crime victim compensation program are administered by the Connecticut Judicial Branch, Office of Victim Services. The victim assistance program uses VOCA funds to provide services to federal and state victims of crime, including rape, drunk driving, child abuse and domestic violence. The victim compensation program reimburses victims for costs such as medical services, lost wages, mental health counseling and funeral expenses that are incurred as a result of a crime. More information on Connecticut’s Office of Victim Services can be found at www.jud.state.ct.us/crimevictim.
The award to Connecticut this fiscal year is $4,498,821 for victim assistance, and $1,144,000 for victim compensation.
The United States Attorney’s Office is charged with enforcing federal criminal laws in Connecticut, and with representing the federal government in civil litigation in the District. The Office, which currently employs approximately 65 attorneys and 57 staff members at offices in New Haven, Hartford and Bridgeport, is committed to developing and maintaining strategic partnerships among federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to ensure the effective deployment of resources to positively impact the quality of life for all Connecticut residents.
More information about the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut can be found at www.justice.gov/usao/ct.