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Community Oversight Of Police Not Yet Implemented

A community oversight committee intended to respond to the findings of a Department of Justice investigation has not been been implemented, the Oregonian reports. The federal investigation found numerous abuses of suspects, as previously noted. The predecessor committee was disbanded, and has yet to be re-formed, though it has been over a year. A request […]

Oregon House Votes To Close “Boyfriend Loophole”

The Oregon House of Representatives voted Thursday to close a so-called “loophole” regarding domestic violence charges and the right to bear arms, Oregon Public Broadcasting reports. The vote was 37-23. The measure would prohibit citizens from owning firearms if they have been convicted of domestic violence or stalking, irrespective of marital status or legal relationship […]

Death Row Inmate Denied New DNA Testing

Marion County Circuit judge Channing Bennett denied a request for new DNA testing in the case of a man convicted of aggravated murder in 2004. The murder took place in March, 1998. The victim was stabbed repeatedly. The defendant, Jesse L. Johnson, requested new testing on numerous items, including some that had been tested before. […]

Oregon DAs Abandon Efforts To Modify Jury Rules

Oregon and Louisiana are the only states where defendants may be convicted with non-unanimous juries. (Murder requires a unanimous verdict in both states.) Prosecutors had agreed to push for changes to require that all verdicts be unanimous in Oregon, but backed away when potential partners in the effort balked at another effort to give prosecutors […]

Taser Use By Police Still Not Compliant

Tasers or stun guns form an important part of law enforcement’s crime control arsenal, especially as police face increased pressure to use non-lethal force. However, Portland police face possible legal and regulatory ramifications from ongoing misuse and overuse of the technology. Changes in department policy have been aimed at limiting an individual suspect’s exposure to […]

Vehicular Crimes Defense

Accusations of crimes involving vehicles carry stiff penalties. Prosecutors like to stack as many penalties on top of each other as they can. If they can charge you with multiple crimes by making alleged incidents seem separate, they’ll do it. We all know the importance of cars to make it in today’s society. If you’re […]

Authorities, Citizens Fear Theft

Stories like this one reflect the public’s concern over serious crime, and as media coverage intensifies, the public puts pressure on public officials and law enforcement to “do something.” It’s the kind of scenario where concern can become hysteria, and a prosecutor–who’s seldom rewarded for cases he chooses not to prosecute–may be tempted to cut […]

City Drops Suit Over Court-Mandated Police Reforms

The City of Portland has dropped a legal challenge to court-mandated police reforms that was to be heard before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. A settlement had been reached in response to a 2012 federal investigation which found instances of excessive force by police, especially with regard to persons living with mental illness. The […]

False Accusations Of Domestic Abuse

False accusations of domestic abuse do occur. Almost seven years ago, the Oregon legislature decided to act. Some critics certainly feared that punishing false accusations of domestic violence would have a chilling effect on the reporting of real domestic abuse. No reasonable person condones this violence. However, decent people can be caught in a web […]