SALEM, Oregon (AP) — Republicans and Democrats on the Oregon House Judiciary Committee unanimously approved almost a dozen bills on police reform, a show of bipartisan unity in a Legislature that has been divided along party lines. The bills involve regulating use of tear gas, requiring a publicly accessible database that names officers disciplined for misconduct, and limiting arbitrators’ decisions on officers’ misconduct cases. Gov. Kate Brown congratulated the committee for pushing forward so many reforms in the wake of the death of George Floyd last May in Minneapolis. Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum said the package of bills can transform police work, and how officers are perceived.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The mayor of Portland, Oregon, and city commissioners have reached a deal on proposals intended to stem a spike in gun violence over the past year. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the compromise, approved Wednesday, would re-establish a proactive team of uniformed police officers tasked with preventing shootings. The team would operate with greater civilian oversight than its disbanded predecessor. The move represents an about-face after city leaders in June voted to cut nearly $16 million from the police budget, reductions that included the elimination of the gun violence unit. The cuts came amid racial justice protests following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon state Senate Minority Leader Fred Girod faces a recall effort because he was among GOP lawmakers who allowed the chamber to reach a quorum last month while it debated whether to ban firearms in state buildings. Oregon Public Broadcating reports that Girod and five fellow Republicans were on hand March 25, ensuring the chamber had the minimum 20 members present required to take up business. On Monday, a Molalla residentfiled a prospective petition to bounce Girod from the Senate seat he’s held since 2008. To successfully force a recall election, the petition will need to collect at least 8,922 valid signatures from voters in Girod’s district by July 6. Girod said he was not worried and is focused on getting relief to his fire-ravaged district.
JUNCTION CITY, Ore. (AP) — A Junction City man who was convicted of nearly two dozen charges related to the alleged sexual abuse of a child has been sentenced to 204 years in prison. The Albany Democrat-Herald reports Michael Long was sentenced Tuesday in Linn County Circuit Court. A jury found him guilty in February of 10 counts of sexual abuse, five counts of encouraging child sexual abuse, three counts of unlawful sexual penetration, three counts of sodomy and strangulation. Investigators began investigating Long, who was then living in Tangent, after they were told he had inappropriate interactions with a middle school-aged girl on Facebook. That investigation uncovered a second victim involving a girl of elementary school age.