Clackamas County DA sues state to block new sentencing law
Clackamas County District Attorney John Foote and two others are suing the state to block enforcement of a new law that altered sentencing guidelines for property crimes.
Foote joined Mary Elledge of Oregon City and Deborah Mapes-Stice of Sandy in the Clackamas County Circuit Court lawsuit filed Wednesday, Nov. 15. Elledge, whose son was murdered in 1986, is a member of the Oregon chapter of Parents of Murdered Children and a member of Crime Victims United who supported measures favoring crime victims. Mapes-Stice and her husband were victims of embezzlement, "a crime that that almost destroyed their family business, Trail Pals Horse Trailer Accessory Store," according to the five-page lawsuit.
The focus of the lawsuit, House Bill 3078, amends state law to "reduce the sentence for identity theft and theft in the first degree to 13 months of incarceration." According to the lawsuit, HB 3078 is unconstitutional because it was not adopted by "two-thirds votes of the elected members of both houses of the Legislature."
Foote, Elledge and Mapes-Stice asked the court to declare the new law unenforceable and award the plaintiffs an unspecified amount in attorneys and court fees.
No court date has been set for the case.