No crime, no dime: Genna Ayup's family denied victim's compensation funds
Reporter: Marcelino Benito
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Genna Ayup's family turned to the Pima Crime Victim Compensation Program for help with hospital bills and funeral costs tied to their daughter's death. And get this -- not only are they being denied, but they're also being told: no crime, no dime.
They tell 9OYS that's the worst part.
"That's a crime, that's a crime," said Toni Solheid, Genna's mother. "Someone was shot and killed. That is a crime."
So for help with thousands of dollars in funeral costs and hospital bills from the night Genna died, Solheid filled out a crime victim compensation application. On the form, Solheid described her daughter's injuries, a deadly gunshot wound to the head, inflicted by Ronald Corbin Jr., Genna's boyfriend.
She sent it off expecting anything but the answer she got.
"You open it, you read it, what do you think?" asked 9OYS reporter Marcelino Benito.
"Oh my God, I can't believe this," said Solheid. "One more slap in the face."
And this slap hurt bad.
The victim compensation's board denied her claim. The reason: not enough proof of a crime. In short, a crime never happened.
"This is the last straw," said Solheid. "It's not about the money, it's not about the money. It's my daughter's life. It's my daughter's life. She's gone, how can they say that's not a crime?"
The man who fired the gun and admitted to it never faced charges. But a charge or conviction isn't a prerequisite to apply. Genna's mother doesn't understand the rationale.
"No adequate proof of a crime?" asked Solheid. "All you had to do is walk in and see her that night to know that a crime was committed."
She wishes the letter would have said anything -- anything at all -- but that.
"If they had said we don't have funds right now, I would have walked away," said Solheid. "That would've been fine. I could understand that."
But this? She will never comprehend. So for now, all Genna's mother can do is try to remember her daughter, while trying to forget the letter that brought back so much pain.
"We're not giving up, not until the day I die," Solheid said. "I'll pursue justice."
9OYS reached out to the Pima County Attorney's Office Wednesday for some comment, but we were told no one was available to answer our questions. They did email KGUN9 a brochure with some information on the Victim Compensation Program.
Since receiving that letter, the family has tried contacting Homicide Survivors for help, but no one has returned their calls.
Editor's note: An earlier version of the video attached to this story included a shot of a document that contained some sensitive private personal information. KGUN9 regrets inadvertently including that shot in the story, and we apologize. The current version has been edited to remove that information.