Google+ Badge

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Text of Aaron's Law

Senate Bill 1041 (AARON’S LAW)
Sponsored by Senator Avel Louise Gordly

(now Chapter 841 Oregon Revised Statutes)
(note: ORS 163.257(1)(a) is the crime of Custodial Interference in the First Degree, a Class B felony)

AN ACT Relating to custodial interference; and declaring an emergency.

Be It Enacted by the People of the State of Oregon:

SECTION 1. (1) Any of the following persons may bring a civil action to secure damages against any and all persons whose actions are unlawful under ORS 163.257 (1)(a):

(a) A person who is 18 years of age or older and who has been taken, enticed or kept in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a); or
(b) A person whose custodial rights have been interfered with if, by reason of the interference: (A) The person has reasonably and in good faith reported a person missing to any city, county or state police agency; or (B) A defendant in the action has been charged with a violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a).

(2) An entry of judgment or a certified copy of a judgment against the defendant for a violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a) is prima facie evidence of liability if the plaintiff was injured by the defendant¢s unlawful action under the conviction.

(3)(a) For purposes of this section, a public or private entity that provides counseling and shelter services to victims of domestic violence is not considered to have violated ORS 163.257 (1)(a) if the entity provides counseling or shelter services to a person who violates ORS 163.257 (1)(a).
(b) As used in this subsection, “victim of domestic violence” means an individual against whom domestic violence, as defined in ORS 135.230, 181.610, 411.117 or 657.176, has been committed.

(4) Bringing an action under this section does not prevent the prosecution of any criminal action under ORS 163.257.

(5) A person bringing an action under this section must establish by a preponderance of the evidence that a violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a) has occurred.

(6) It is an affirmative defense to civil liability for an action under this section that the defendant reasonably and in good faith believed that the defendant¢s violation of ORS 163.257(1)(a) was necessary to preserve the physical safety of: (a) The defendant; (b) The person who was taken, enticed or kept in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a); or (c) The parent or guardian of the person who was taken, enticed or kept in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a).

(7)(a) If the person taken, enticed or kept in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a) is under 18 years of age at the time an action is brought under this section, the court may: (A) Appoint an attorney who is licensed to practice law in Oregon to act as guardian ad litem for the person; and (B) Appoint one of the following persons to provide counseling services to the person:
(i) A psychiatrist.
(ii) A psychologist licensed under ORS 675.010 to 675.150.
(iii) A clinical social worker licensed under ORS 675.510 to 675.600.
(iv) A professional counselor or marriage and family therapist licensed under ORS 675.715.
(b) The court may assess against the parties all costs of the attorney or person providing counseling services appointed under this subsection.

(8) If an action is brought under this section by a person described under subsection (1)(b) of this section and a party shows good cause that it is appropriate to do so, the court may order the parties to obtain counseling directed toward educating the parties on the impact that the parties' conflict has on the person taken, enticed or kept in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a). The court may assess against the parties all costs of obtaining counseling ordered under this subsection.

(9) Upon prevailing in an action under this section, the plaintiff may recover: (a) Special and general damages, including damages for emotional distress; and (b) Punitive damages.

(10) The court may award reasonable attorney fees to the prevailing party in an action under this section.

(11)(a) Notwithstanding ORS 12.110, 12.115, 12.117 or 12.160, an action under this section must be commenced within six years after the violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a). An action under this section accruing while the person who is entitled to bring the action is under 18 years of age must be commenced not more than six years after that person attains 18 years of age.
(b) The period of limitation does not run during any time when the person taken, enticed or kept in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a) is removed from this state as a result of the defendant's actions in violation of ORS 163.257 (1)(a).

SECTION 2. Section 1 of this 2005 Act applies to causes of action arising on or after the effective date of this 2005 Act.

SECTION 3. This 2005 Act being necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health and safety, an emergency is declared to exist, and this 2005 Act takes effect on its passage.

Passed by Senate August 1, 2005
Passed by House August 3, 2005
Approved by Governor: October 13, 2005
Filed in Office of Secretary of State:

Aaron’s Law may apply to any Oregon child abduction occurring after the date the Governor signed the bill into law.

1 comment:

Grass said...

Dear Sir,

What advice would you have for a mother and the young child who experienced a kidnapping?

I met this family just prior to the child's abduction during the Holidays 2007. The young gentleman missed two months of school, was removed from the state twice, and only returned after intervention by national clearinghouse agencies.

As a witness to the event; using words like pathetic and impotent to describe the (lack of) professionalism and justice/victim services rendered by the State, County, and Municipal agencies is extremely accurate.

This family's story is written like a bad movie. I apologize for bringing this to your attention, but due to 1.) my experience serving as a grand jury member, 2.) my professional understanding of how 'an agency's S.O.P.' works, and 3.) twenty years of mentoring by a former D.A., I consider this viable to be case law.

Unfortunately, since the prosecuting D.A. plea-bargained the crime down to a 163.245 charge (the defendant accepted and then fled prior to sentencing), the help from counselors directed by the law are not even available.

This is a 9 year domestic violence situation, and the State has only pulled the fuse from the bomb ... in three years, when the statute of limitations is up, the perp will be back in Oregon. His mental state is deteriorating and the mother is in real danger of grievous physical injury.

I wish I could say more - to argue how disturbing it was to witness a County Deputy deny a mother's civil access to file a missing child report.
The report was finally entered seven weeks after the abduction.

Thank you for your time. I feel empathy for the situation you have lived through and admire your hard work to improve the quality of services for honest Oregon families.

Please take your time, if you respond. I know I have 19 years to get the boy the services the Oregon Senate and Governor Ted promised in 2005.

Until then, I will continue hiding them in secret.

Mr. G