VirginiaTech-Settleme 7thLd-Writethru 04-10 Web
Va. Tech settlement reached
Most families of victims of the mass shootings at Virginia Tech have agreed to an $11 million state settlement that will compensate families who lost loved ones, pay survivors’ medical costs and avoid a court battle over whether anyone besides the gunman was to blame.
Gov. Timothy M. Kaine said Thursday a "substantial majority" of families of victims of the Virginia Tech shootings agreed to the settlement.
Peter Grenier and Douglas Fierberg, who represent 21 families, said the settlement was worth more than $11 million, but neither they nor the governor would discuss its terms until final papers are drawn in a few days.
Grenier and Fierberg said seriously injured victims "will be well compensated and have their health care needs taken care of forever," and that families who lost loved ones would be "similarly compensated and cared for."
"We want to make sure the settlement is fiscally responsible for the commonwealth," Kaine said, "but it’s kind of a fair balance of a variety of interests."
Seung-Hui Cho, a mentally disturbed student, killed 32 victims and wounded two dozen others at Virginia Tech on April 16, 2007, before committing suicide.
Homeless resident Phalen Pierson lounges in the basement of the Capitol in Madison, Wis. on Thursday, April 10. Pierson said he spends six days a week relaxing there between shifts as a caterer. He said Madison's welcoming attitude means that too many homeless can live without working. "There's too many handouts," he said. The recent murder of a college student has sparked a debate over whether the city is too friendly to transient residents.