DETROIT -

Laurie Moore Laurie Moore founded the non-profit organization Looking for My Sister which promised to help victims of domestic violence in Detroit.

Moore now is accused of taking thousands of federal dollars, Detroiters' tax money, which was set aside for women in need and spent it on herself, her family and others.

An attorney with Flood Law in Royal Oak, Valentina Lucaj has no affiliation with the Moore case but she has represented several women seeking help in domestic violence situations.

"Every dollar is hugely important because this facility is run on either government funding or private funding," said Valentina. "If they don't have the funding then these facilities close."

Valentina won't comment about Moore but she is speaking out, stressing the importance of non-profit organizations and the crucial role they play in keeping survivors safe.

"It's critical because a lot of times they don't have anywhere to go," she said. "Usually they have to leave immediately and sometimes it's difficult to find an organization where you can place these people."

Because some of the federal money was used to help domestic violence victims, Moore was given four years of probation instead of prison time. She will have to pay $82,000 in restitution.