Helping Victims of Crime

Archive Report

Victim Compensation Laws

Growing Nationwide Interest in Problem

Many of the 57 million Americans who become victims of crime every year find that the criminal justice system dispenses more justice to criminals than to victims. The legal rights of defendants have been clearly spelled out by the U.S. Supreme Court. But until recently, the judicial system paid only scant attention to the needs of the victim. This situation appears to be changing with the emergence of victim compensation and assistance programs in many states and localities.

“The plight of the innocent citizen victimized by lawlessness deserves immediate national attention,” President Reagan said April 15, four days before the start of the second annual National Victims Rights Week. “Too often their pleas for justice have gone unheeded and ...

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