MEASURE 73


ARGUMENT IN FAVOR

VOTE YES ON MEASURE 73

TO HOLD CRIMINALS ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR ACTIONS

This measure reflects part of what was originally passed by the voters as Measure 40 in November 1996. The Oregon Supreme Court has ruled that Measure 40 could not be enacted as a single amendment to the Oregon Constitution, and that each portion should have been voted on separately. The Legislature has split the original Ballot Measure 40 into separate amendments to the Constitution and has referred them to the voters. Measure 73 is one of those referrals.

When a person is ordered to testify about a crime, the person is given protection from the use of this testimony against the person. However, there is a difference between guaranteeing that the person will not be prosecuted at all for the crime, no matter where the evidence comes from, and guaranteeing that the person's own testimony will not be used against him.

This measure maintains the guarantee that a person who is ordered to testify will not have that testimony used against him. However, it allows the use of evidence which is gathered separately, without any connection with the person's own testimony. This common sense modification parallels the system used at the federal level and in many other states.

Referral of this measure to the voters was sought by the three largest, longest established victims' organizations in Oregon (Parents of Murdered Children; Mothers Against Drunk Driving; Crime Victims United) and by Oregon law enforcement organizations (Association Chiefs of Police; District Attorneys Association; State Sheriffs Association; State Police; Federation of Parole and Probation Officers).

As chief petitioner of the original Measure 40, and as originator of this referral in the Legislature, I urge your yes vote on Measure 73.

Kevin L. Mannix
State Representative

(This information furnished by Kevin L. Mannix, Justice For All.)

(This space purchased for $300 in accordance with ORS 251.255.)
The printing of this argument does not constitute an endorsement by the State of Oregon, nor does the state warrant the accuracy or truth of any statement made in the argument.


ARGUMENT IN FAVOR

In 1996, Oregonians overwhelmingly voted to give crime victims at least as many rights as criminals. But the politicians on the Oregon Supreme Court came up with a never-before used technicality to throw out the voters' wishes.

Measures 69 through 75 are virtually the same Crime Victims Bill of Rights.

In the fight against organized crime and large sophisticated criminal enterprises, one of the greatest tools the federal government has is the ability to grant "limited immunity" to underlings and witnesses within the organization. Many states in this country have similar laws.

In Oregon, up until 1984, it was believed that the prosecution had this ability. But that idea evaporated as a result of the Oregon Supreme Court's expansion of criminal rights that began in 1982.

How real is this problem? It is real and it is big! If Oregon prosecutors have to give immunity it must be "absolute immunity," i.e. the person can never be prosecuted.

Is it possible to penetrate large-scale criminal organizations with "absolute immunity?" No. If no one talks, the prosecutor is in the dark. If the prosecutor gives the wrong person immunity, the results can be catastrophic.

Take the case of the person who was the so-called "murder witness," who said he would only testify if he was given "absolute immunity." His attorney only wanted to protect his client's rights. The "witness" was given immunity. Unfortunately, he was the murderer and as a result of the Oregon law, he could never be prosecuted. That would not have happened if Measure 73 had been enacted.

LET'S GIVE THE GOOD GUYS THE TOOLS TO FIGHT BACK!

PLEASE VOTE YES ON MEASURES 69 THROUGH 75!

SHOULDN'T THE CRIME VICTIM HAVE AT LEAST AS MANY RIGHTS AS THE CRIMINAL?

(This information furnished by Steve Doell, Crime Victims United.)

(This space purchased for $300 in accordance with ORS 251.255.)
The printing of this argument does not constitute an endorsement by the State of Oregon, nor does the state warrant the accuracy or truth of any statement made in the argument.


ARGUMENT IN FAVOR

    Oregon is one of only a handful of states with what is called "transactional" immunity. Most other states have a "use" immunity system, most notable in the prosecutions in the Watergate and Iran-Contra prosecutions by federal prosecutors.

    The difference is simple, but drastic.

    The Fifth Amendment provides everyone in America, whether a citizen or not, with the absolute right not to give testimony against him/herself. Police and prosecutors sometimes may try to solve a perplexing crime by offering a person who may have knowledge of the crime "immunity" if that person will tell what he/she knows. Of course police and prosecutors don't want to give such immunity to the main evil-doer, who could then fully confess and avoid any responsibility.

    "Transactional" immunity is an all-or-nothing proposition. Under Oregon's current scheme, a person given immunity to testify can never be prosecuted for any crime related to his/her testimony, no matter what he/she has said or admitted. One typical situation is a rape case in which two men in a group of six are suspected of the sexual assault. None of the men are willing to speak and it is unclear who actually raped the victim and who may have actively helped. Under Oregon's "transactional" immunity, anyone made to testify can never be charged with anything relating to the rape, even if other evidence or eyewitnesses later become available.

    Under Measure 73, nothing the person given immunity has said could ever be used again him/her, but he/she could still be prosecuted if other evidence unrelated to their testimony became available.

    Measure 73 would protect Fifth Amendment rights but prevent criminals from using immunity as a shield from rightful prosecution.

    Vote YES on Measure 73 to unlock the handcuffs on our law enforcement officers!

(This information furnished by Joshua Marquis.)

(This space purchased for $300 in accordance with ORS 251.255.)
The printing of this argument does not constitute an endorsement by the State of Oregon, nor does the state warrant the accuracy or truth of any statement made in the argument.


Arguments In Opposition

Measure 73 Text

November 2, 1999 Special Election Voters' Pamphlet Table of Contents