SENATE BILL 414
56th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2023
Shannon D. Pinto and Linda M. Lopez and Pamelya Herndon
RELATING TO THE CRIME VICTIMS REPARATION ACT; AMENDING THE ELIGIBILITY FOR REPARATION TO INCLUDE MISSING AND MURDERED INDIGENOUS PEOPLE.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. Section 31-22-7 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1981, Chapter 325, Section 7, as amended) is amended to read:
"31-22-7. ELIGIBILITY FOR REPARATION.--
A. If a person is injured or killed by an act or omission of another person coming within the criminal jurisdiction of the state after July 1, 1981, which act or omission includes a crime enumerated in Section 31-22-8 NMSA 1978, or a missing or murdered indigenous person as provided in this section, and upon application for reparation, the commission may award reparation in accordance with the Crime Victims Reparation Act:
(1) to the victim;
(2) in the case of an indigenous person in New Mexico who is believed to be a missing person pursuant to the Missing Persons Information and Reporting Act or has been murdered and the case is being investigated by a law enforcement agency, the office of the district attorney or the office of the attorney general, to or for the benefit of any one or more of the missing or deceased indigenous person's dependents;
[(2)] (3) in the case of the victim's death, to or for the benefit of any one or more of the deceased victim's dependents; or
[(3)] (4) to any individual who voluntarily assumes funeral or medical expenses of the victim.
B. For the purpose of the Crime Victims Reparation Act, a person shall be deemed to have intentionally committed an act or omission constituting a crime, notwithstanding that by reason of age, insanity, drunkenness or otherwise the person was legally incapable of forming a criminal intent.
C. In determining whether to make an order under this section, the commission may consider any circumstances it determines to be relevant. The commission shall consider the behavior of the victim and whether, because of provocation or otherwise, the victim bears responsibility for the act or omission constituting a crime that caused the victim's injury or death and shall reduce the amount of reparation in accordance with its assessment of the degree of responsibility attributable to the victim.
D. An order may be made under this section whether or not any person is prosecuted for or convicted of a crime enumerated in Section 31-22-8 NMSA 1978; provided an arrest has been made or the act or omission constituting a crime has been reported to the police in a reasonable time or the act or omission constituting a crime has been reported to a licensed medical, mental health or counseling provider, or tribal health provider. No order may be made under this section unless the commission finds that:
(1) the act or omission constituting a crime did occur;
(2) the injury or death of the victim resulted from the act or omission constituting a crime; and
(3) the claimant or victim fully cooperated with the appropriate law enforcement agencies or the commission finds that the claimant or victim acted reasonably under the circumstances.
E. An order may be made pursuant to this section for a missing or murdered indigenous person; provided that the person has been reported missing within a reasonable time to the appropriate law enforcement agency. In the event that the application involves a murdered indigenous person, the commission may issue an order; provided that all the requirements pursuant to Subsection D of this section are met.
[E.] F. Upon application from the district attorney of the appropriate district, the commission may suspend proceedings under the Crime Victims Reparation Act for such period as it deems desirable on the grounds that a prosecution for the act or omission constituting a crime has commenced or is imminent."
SECTION 2. EFFECTIVE DATE.--The effective date of the provisions of this act is July 1, 2023.
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