As a victim of crime in Oregon, you have legal rights. Many of these rights go into effect automatically and can be found in the “Victims’ Rights Guide”. However, some rights you must request before they go into effect. A victim, the victim’s attorney or if the victim requests, the district attorney at his or her discretion, may assert and enforce these rights on your behalf. [Oregon Constitution Art 1, §42(4)]
Rights that are automatic and do not require further action include the right to:
- Be notified of your rights as soon as practicable
- Have a personal representative or support person with you
- Attend any open court proceeding
- Speak at a release hearing or sentencing
- Prompt restitution
- Protect your personal identifiers from the defendant
- Obtain a copy of a transcript or recording of open court proceedings if one is already made. (You may be charged for the transcript or recording)
- Refuse to speak to an attorney or private investigator for the defendant
The following rights are also available to you if you choose to exercise them. You must request these rights:
- To be informed in advance of any critical stage of the proceedings held in open court when the defendant will be present. In Oregon law “critical stages” are defined as follows:
- To obtain information about the conviction, sentence, imprisonment, criminal history and future release from physical custody of the criminal defendant or convicted criminal
- In a violent felony case, to be consulted by the district attorney about plea negotiations and the final plea agreement
- To be notified when the convicted person is released from prison
- If the crime involved transmission of body fluids, testing of the defendant for HIV and other communicable diseases
- To limit copying or distribution of visual or audio recordings of sexual conduct by a child or invasion of personal privacy
- To allow no coverage of sex offense proceedings by media television, photography, or recording equipment
- In a DUII automobile collision case, that information about the case given to the defendant is also shared with you
- Ongoing involvement in any court actions that happen after the conviction such as appeal, post-conviction or federal habeas proceedings
There are many other rights that may apply to your case. For a general overview please review the “Victims’ Rights Guide” also available in Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese and Korean. If you have questions, please contact your local district attorney victim assistance program, or the Oregon Department of Justice.
Victims’ Rights Information After Conviction (Adult)
The following crime victims’ rights would apply after a criminal conviction.
To request certain rights after a criminal conviction, you must provide your contact information to:
- Your county’s community corrections agency if the offender is supervised locally (on probation),
- The Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision (503-945-0907) if the offender is incarcerated in the state prison system, or
- The Oregon Psychiatric Security Review Board (503-229-5596) or the State Hospital Review Panel (503-945-2800) if the offender is found Guilty Except for Insanity (GEI).
VINE (Victim Information Notification Everyday), a victim notification system, gives victims of crime 24-hour access to information about all in-custody adult offenders, as well as youth offenders in Oregon Youth Authority facilities. This custody information in adult cases includes:
- The location of custody
- Changes in parole or probation status
- Release information
- Transfer information
- Notification of escape(s)
- Notification of death
To ensure notification, you must register with VINE. You can use the VINE service by calling 1-877-674-8463 or by going to www.VINELINK.com.
To be notified when someone in the custody of the Department of Corrections is scheduled to be released, contact Victim Services for the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision at 503-945-0907.
To be notified 30 days in advance of Parole Board hearings, contact Victim Services for the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision at 503-945-0907. (These hearings occur only in certain adult criminal cases.)
If the defendant is under the authority of the Psychiatric Security Review Board (PSRB) or the State Hospital Review Panel (SHRP), you may be notified in advance of hearings or when the defendant is released, discharged or escapes by contacting the PSRB at 503-229-5596 or the SHRP at 503-945-2800. If you want to be notified as soon as possible of an escape, also notify the facility where the defendant is committed.
You can request information about registered sex offenders by calling the Oregon State Police Sex Offender Information at 503-378-3725 x44429.
After conviction, to confirm that you are signed up to receive Department of Justice Post-Conviction Program services for any ongoing legal actions contact 503-378-5348.
If your rights are not honored, you can assert a claim of violation of crime victims’ rights. There are time limits for this right. For more information see www.doj.state.or.us/victims.