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Payouts from fund set up for Aurora movie theater victims finalized

The families of the people killed and some other victims of July's movie theater massacre in Aurora, Colo., will soon receive money from a fund set up to help them after mediator Kenneth Feinberg finalized payment decisions Friday.

The Aurora Victim Relief Fund closed Thursday with a final balance of $5,338,360, according to The Denver Post. The families of the 12 deceased individuals and five victims with permanent brain damage or physical paralysis will each get $220,000, which amounts to 70 percent of the funds, the newspaper reported.

The other 30 percent of the funds will be distributed to victims who suffered physical injuries, based on how many days they were in the hospital, Denver's NBC-affiliate KUSA reported.

On July 20, shooting suspect James Holmes allegedly killed 12 and wounded 58 others, at a midnight screening of "The Dark Knight Rises" in Denver-suburb Aurora.

Feinberg, who is well-known for mediating the Sept 11. victim's compensation fund, worked with the office of Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, the victims, the fund's co-creators and a nonprofit, according to The Denver Post.

“These payments won’t replace loved ones who died or completely heal all wounds,” Gov. John Hickenlooper said in a statement. “But through the generosity of others we hope victims and their families can use this money to continue their recovery."

Feinberg approved 38 out of 57 filed claims, according to KUSA. The 19 denied claims did not qualify under previously announced protocols, KUSA reported.

Because of the limited amount of money, victims who did not require overnight hospitalization and claims for mental trauma were not compensated. However, the governor's office noted that "free counseling for all victims is still available."

Feinberg received no payment for his services and is working on a final report about the fund, which expected to be released in December.

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