The school bloodshed at Minnesota’s Red Lake reservation has prompted the state to seek $250,000 in federal victim compensation, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. After the Columbine High School shooting, Colorado received $1.7 million for victims and their families, along with counseling services for thousands of people in the community. Compensation for funerals, lost wages, and counseling at Red Lake is an attempt to alleviate some of the damage, said Mary Ellison of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety. “We spend a tremendous amount of attention on people who commit crimes and really this is just a drop in the bucket for crime victims,” she said.
Authorities have said Jeff Weise, 16, opened fire at Red Lake Senior High School on March 21, killing five students, a teacher, and a security guard and wounding seven students before committing suicide. He is said to have killed his grandfather and his grandfather’s companion earlier that day. So far, the Minnesota Crime Victims Reparations Program has received 30 claims from Red Lake. Six were for funeral costs, totaling nearly $42,000. All who saw or heard the shooting – potentially hundreds of students and teachers – are eligible for outpatient counseling and medication. People threatened by Weise – those directly in the “zone of danger,” – will be considered injured victims. They and their families are eligible for more benefits, including lost wages, and inpatient mental health care.