What We Do...
Criminal Prosecution Division
An effective justice system remains one of the basic and vital functions of the local government. Prosecution occupies a central position in that system. Oregon's Constitution delegates the primary criminal law enforcement authority to the District Attorney. All felony cases that occur in Marion County can only be prosecuted by the District Attorney. In addition, most misdemeanor cases that occur in Marion County are prosecuted by the District Attorney. Oregon law mandates the District Attorney to provide victims with their constitutional and statutory rights in each criminal case. Because of these legal responsibilities, the District Attorney's Office serves the people of the many municipalities located within the county, as well as those citizens living in unincorporated areas.
Four teams comprise the criminal prosecution section, each with specialization - the domestic violence team, the adult and child sexual assault team, the career property team and the drug prosecution team. Daily required functions continuously drive the prosecutors and the staff during working hours and beyond.
Two criminal docket courtrooms operate 8:30 to 5:00 p.m., 5 days a week, each requiring a Deputy District Attorney.
The Grand Jury functions 5 days a week, alternating days, 9:00-5:00 p.m, reviewing felony cases.
Each Deputy carries a caseload often twice that of what is reasonable. Annually, they appear at hundreds of court appearances and bench and jury trials in the Marion County Courthouse. They review in-custody cases, search warrants, assist law enforcement agencies, have mandated on-call responsibilities, conduct community trainings, attend numerous agency and community meetings, serve on committees and respond to victim and community needs.
The District Attorney Family Division establishes paternity and child support orders, modifies child support orders and collects child and spousal support by enforcing court orders. Many remedies are used to collect support including income withholding orders, garnishments, tax refund intercepts, license suspensions, financial disclosure exams and contempt of court prosecutions. In a recent fiscal year, the division collected $17.4 million for families in Marion County and elsewhere in about 5,300 cases. Child support cases can last for 18-21 years and multiple modification requests result in waiting lists for such services. Medical insurance provisions are also enforced by requiring the enrollment of children in existing health insurance plans.
The mission of the Marion County District Attorney's Victim Assistance Division is to involve crime victims and the community in a healing process that lessens the devastating impact of crime. We accomplish this by providing direct victim services; advocating for victims rights; offering volunteer opportunities; providing education and promoting public awareness; and promoting professional and agency communication.
We provide comprehensive, direct services to victims including all underserved categories, with emphasis on sexual assault, elder abuse, child abuse, domestic violence, drunk driving, victims of juvenile crime, and surviving family members of homicide victims. We also provide services to victims of other crimes that are prosecuted by the District Attorney's Office, such as identity theft, some property crimes and serious physical assaults.
ORS Chapter 146 mandates the District Attorney's Office to investigate all deaths that occur where the deceased was not under the care of a physician.
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