DA's Victim Witness Program to Help Conception Victims
Source: District Attorney of Santa Barbara County
Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce E. Dudley announced [Monday] that the California Victim Compensation Board has named the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Victim Witness Program as the governmental agency that will be entrusted with helping victims of the Conception Dive Boat Fire. Specifically, the D.A’s office will help victims seek funding for funeral related costs, applications for compensation, and referrals to agencies or providers for counseling and other services.
District Attorney Dudley stated, “From day one our office has been engaged in this endeavor. From the early morning hours of September 3, 2019 our office’s focus has been on the fire victims and their loved ones. If there are any members of victims’ families that have not already contacted us, please do so by calling 805-568-2400 or toll free 855-840-3242.”
D.A. Dudley went on to say, “Our office understands that our entire community has once again been deeply affected by a mass tragedy; one that came at a time when many of us were still grieving over our devastating fires and debris flows. Clearly, those who suffer most during these catastrophes are the victims and their loved ones. Still, these traumatic events also deeply effect our First Responders. The Santa Barbara Police Foundation has created a program entitled “At Ease” which provides carefully vetted, confidential, cost-free counseling for First Responders for this and all of our other recent tragedies. At Ease operators can be reached at (844) 727-3911.”
D.A. Dudley further announced, “The remaining criminal investigation will continue to be primarily conducted by multiple Federal Agencies reporting exclusively to the United States Attorney’s Office. The Federal Government alone has the necessary resources to do a comprehensive investigation, while our local agencies, including your District Attorney’s Office, will instead continue to respond to, and focus on, our local communities.”
“Finally,” D.A. Dudley commented, “now, more than ever we must be there for our families, friends, and community members alike. Santa Barbarans have a reputation for kindness towards each other and strangers. We take pride in who we are and know that no amount of heartbreak will change our character. Please continue to take good care of yourselves and each other.”