A Letter from Patricia Wenskunas – Founder/CEO, Crime Survivors


I feel like I’ve been stabbed in the heart … and drained of my inner soul. And for the life of me, I don’t understand why? Or how anyone could stoop so low and do this? I just cannot understand it and truthfully, it has affected me to the core.

Corporate identity theft is a shameless crime. In the non-profit world, even worse. It’s an attempt to cash in on another organization’s name and good will. In our case it’s been done with open contempt from another non-profit organization, and it’s been going on for over a year.

Another organization has hijacked our good will and our good standing in the community. They are attempting to pass themselves off as something they are not. They do not share our same mission, values or sense of community. Nor do they have our character or integrity.

So please be careful. Crime Survivors was founded in 2003 by me, Patricia Wenskunas and we’ve always been supported by a great team of individuals. We are based in Irvine and serve Southern California.

If you would like to contribute, volunteer, or are in need of support, please contact us at [email protected]/page/dev/dev or (844) 853-HOPE / (949) 872-7895. www.crimesurvivors.org/page/dev/dev.

At a recent meeting, a supporter and friend said, “Patricia, you’re being victimized again!” I hadn’t thought of it that way, but honestly, it triggered me with the many negative memories throughout my life.

Personally, I have been victimized many times throughout my life. Then in 2002, I survived an attempted murder on my life. Both my life and my son’s life were threatened. For me, I decided to start breaking the cycles of a lifetime of victimization.

In 2003, I decided to channel all of my anger, frustration, energy and talents to a cause above and beyond my own. Community above self. It was then that I started Crime Survivors, an Irvine based 501C3 non-profit organization serving all of Southern California. I decided to take these negative experiences and turn them towards something positive and impactful. I wanted to help others who might find themselves in similar situations.

Crime Survivors has had a positive impact upon the lives of thousands of individuals who have been the misfortunate victims of crime. We have had a positive impact in the community we serve. We continue to work with Police and Sheriff, District Attorneys, Probation & various government agencies throughout Southern California. We work with local schools and churches, fire and ambulance stations, victim assistance bureaus & advocate agencies, shelters, nonprofit organizations, & foundations. We work with anyone who wishes to partner with us.

For the past 13 years, Crime Survivors has been building a reputable name in the crime victim’s movement. People have come to depend on us because they know we deliver and they know of our transparency.

Compared to what’s happened to me throughout my life, this is low on the totem pole – but is has affected me a great deal and it is both devastating and heartbreaking. Do I want to be a victim again? Or do I want to be a survivor?

One of our main missions has been to help victims with breaking the cycles of victimization and starting the process of hopeful healing. We help them morph (like a caterpillar into a butterfly) into survivors… and to survive and thrive. We understand that the scars on the inside are always worse than the visible scars. I know. I have first-hand knowledge and years of living a somewhat healthy, loving and productive life, and yet, I still have triggers and flashbacks of my past victimizations. I still have memories and moments and even some low points. But I have never quit, never given in, and never will I give up.

I am, if anything, a survivor… a survivor that is thriving – and even through this – we will conquer.

The main point is this: I will handle this matter as a survivor and not as a victim. We will do everything in our power to differentiate between the true Crime Survivors, and those who want to cash in on the pain and suffering of others. We won’t tire in that endeavor.

The reason for this open letter is to make you all aware of this menacing – and heartbreaking – problem. We want you to be aware that there is another group trying very purposefully to confuse you into thinking their identity is ours. It is not.

We will be re-branding in the near future and need your help and support! Consider making a tax-deductible donation to help us with our great work that we do for the common good… and for victims, survivors, families, community and for public safety!  www.crimesurvivors.org/page/dev/dev  

God Bless,

Patricia Wenskunas

With Faith, there is Hope…




Crime Survivors vision is for victims of crime to recover from their experience mentally, physically, emotionally, and financially, by receiving the respect, support and protection from law enforcement, the judicial system, and the community.


To provide hope and healing to victims and survivors of crime through advocacy and the support of resources, information, and empowerment from the critical time after a crime occurs through the challenges and successes of surviving and thriving.


  • We believe that no one should feel abandoned or alone and that every person is deserving of love, respect and dignity.
  • We believe that the best way to help others with hope and healing is to work in partnership with our community, law enforcement, elected leaders, and members of the media.
  • We believe that all of us together can lift each other out of darkness and into the light of a restored heart and life.
  • We believe that every broken heart, every hurt, every wound can be healed with love and a strong community of support.
  • We believe in hopeful healing.
  • We believe that with faith, there is always hope.


Crime Survivors is committed to serving our community by being an advocate and resource for crime victims and their families. If you don’t know where to turn, or are confused or frustrated with the public services that are available to you as you recover or seek justice, Crime Survivors can help. Our web site will provide information, resources and tools that will help you become a “Survivor”.


Crime Survivors works in your community to make victims’ rights a top priority. We facilitate communication and cooperation across various public service, government and non-profit organizations to ensure that Victims’ rights are understood, and that the services victims are entitled to be received. If you think you are not receiving the assistance you should, please contact us.

All victims of crime have the right and responsibility to survive.