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Published: Monday, 1/3/2005

Victims relief program in good fiscal health

State officials say Ohio's Victims of Crime Compensation Program has a healthy fund balance, which allowed it to pay out $10.2 million to crime victims in fiscal year 2004, an increase of $300,000 over the previous year.

The program, which has a balance of more than $40.6 million, also reimbursed $3.4 million to medical facilities for collecting evidence in sexual assault cases.

Victims of hit-and-run accidents in 2004 were eligible to receive aid from the fund, which was also used to help clear a backlog of untested convicted-offender DNA samples.

Ohio's crime compensation program, created in 1976, helps crime victims recover lost wages, legal and medical expenses, funeral costs, and other economic losses resulting from a crime. The program receives some federal money but is funded primarily by court fees from felony and misdemeanor convictions.

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