Dozens Honored At Crime Victims' Rights Ceremony - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Dozens Honored At Crime Victims' Rights Ceremony

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Locals affected by violence and crime were honored Wednesday in an award ceremony and candlelight vigil in downtown Reno.

It was put on by the Alliance For Victims' Rights at the Mills B. Lane Justice Center.

Five Sparks Middle School students were honored for helping Michael Landsberry when he was shot and killed in October.

"They risked their own lives for this heroic act," Washoe County School District Police Chief Mike Mieras told the crowd. "For this, I'd like to honor each one of these students with the Chief Star Award."

One of the recipients was Mason Kamerer who was shot that day after being told to get to a safe place. You can imagine, it's still difficult for him to talk about.

"It'll take a couple years for me to get over this feeling of losing not only a teacher... a best friend," he said.

Mr. Landsberry's wife, Sharon, accepted a medal honoring Michael's sacrifice.

Others were honored for their work with victims of crimes. Berdie Cook received an award for being an "Outstanding Volunteer Advocate." She said it was unexpected and that she was just doing her job.

"Being awarded for something that I kind of signed up to do, I agreed to do that," she said. "So, to be recognized as going above and beyond, or just trying my hardest to be there for the victims, it feels good."

The theme for this year's event was, "30 Years: Restoring the Balance of Justice." The name comes from a passage of the Victims of Crime Act back in 1984. That helped give victims financial resources for things like counseling and funeral costs. However, many agree more work needs to be done for the victims.

"There's just so many avenues that we need to look at," said Jacqueline Calvert, Chairperson with the Alliance For Victims' Rights. "Things we need to do for the victims to ensure they're getting what they need."

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