5 Things Oregon Crime Victims and Survivors Should Know About Their Remedies

Yesterday, a Kentucky Jury awarded U.S. Senator Rand Paul $580,000.00 in damages that were a result of injuries and mental anguish he suffered when a neighbor tackled the senator. The neighbor was angry at Rand Paul and attacked him. The neighbor’s attack broke six of Rand Paul’s ribs and bruised his lungs lungs. Prior to Rand Paul’s Civil Suit, the attacking neighbor was prosecuted in Criminal Court and entered a plea of guilty. After the attacker had entered a plea of guilty Senator Paul pursued his civil remedies against the attacker, and the Jury sided with Paul in awarding him damages for medical expenses, mental anguish, pain, suffering, and damages to punish the defendant. This case is unusual due to the fact that the victim was a U.S. Senator, but the facts are not unusual. Here in Oregon, Ross Law PDX has represented survivors and victims in Civil Cases involving sexual abuse, domestic violence, violent attacks that occurred at school, assaults by neighbors, assaults by police officers, and assaults at bars. In most of these cases the survivors of abuse were unaware of the power of the civil justice system and what they could achieve. Oregon Crime Victims and Survivors should know the following:


1) The District Attorney is Not Solely The Victim’s Lawyer: The district attorney prosecutes the suspect criminally. Essentially, it is the district attorney’s job to ensure the suspect is held accountable in criminal court and is punished by either being sent to prison, jail, or put on probation. The district attorney represents all Oregonians, and not just the victim. As a result, the focus of the district attorney may not always be in line with the victim’s wishes.   

2) The Victim Can Have an Attorney Represent them in the Criminal Case and Civil Case: An attorney acting on the victim’s behalf is only representing the victim. In the Criminal Case the victim’s attorney can ensure that the victim’s rights are honored, even if that means disagreeing with the District Attorney’s position. In the civil case the victim’s attorney can pursue claims for monetary damages and other remedies. The main difference is that a civil attorney can file a lawsuit against not only the criminal suspect but other corporations or organizations that may be responsible for the suspect. For example, if a security guard rapes a person while on duty. The district attorney would prosecute the security guard and would have a difficult time prosecuting the security guard’s employer. However, a civil attorney may hold the security guard and the guard’s employer accountable. Additionally, civil attorneys seek compensation for the victim and are unable to send a person to jail or prison for what they have done.

3) Victim’s Can Typically Only Recover Out of Pocket Losses Through the Criminal Case: In Oregon, criminal restitution is typically limited to only economic losses that the defendant caused as a result of his criminal conduct. What this means is that in most cases the Criminal Court cannot order a criminal defendant to pay for damages for mental anguish, fear, anxiety, frustration, sleeplessness, embarrassment, pain, suffering, or other non-economic losses. In order to collect those damages the Victim or Survivor must file a Civil Case. The Rand Paul case is illustrative of why this is such a powerful remedy. In the Paul case, the Jury awarded $7,834.82 in economic losses and $200,000 for pain and suffering. If Paul did not exercise his right to pursue the case in Civil Court he may have been limited to only collecting $7,834.82 from the criminal defendant.

4) In a Civil Case Crime Victims and Survivors Can be Awarded Punitive Damages: Oregon Law permits persons that are victims of certain crimes to be awarded punitive damages in Civil Cases. In many cases, Oregon Law allows person to collect money from people that recklessly endanger and injure a person. ORS 31.730   These damages are awarded to the injured person to punish the offender, and can make a significant difference in the amount of money the crime victim or survivor receives. For instance, the Jury awarded Senator Rand Paul $375,000 in punitive damages. These damages were to punish the attacking neighbor for assaulting Rand Paul. There is not a fixed amount for punitive damages, and the additional amount will vary depending on the injuries, the reckless conduct, and the “record as a whole.” ORS 31.730   

5) A Crime Victim or Survivor Can Use a Pseudonym to Protect Their Identity in Civil Court: Most crime victims and survivors do not want their identity revealed in court filings. Most Courts will permit the victim or survivor to take steps to protect their identity by proceeding under a pseudonym. In these cases the court may permit the survivor to use a pseudonym of initials such as J.D.

If you or someone you know have been injured by a criminal defendant please contact Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658 to discuss your options and remedies. Ross Law PDX has successfully fought for Crime Victims throughout the State of Oregon. Ross Law PDX is also happy to provide a free case consultation to anyone that was intentionally injured by another. Please note that results vary and many settlements in Crime Victims cases, and not all cases can be pursued. Please do not solely rely on this post and contact a crime victim attorney to discuss your rights and options.

It should be noted Senator Paul’s case is unusual due to the fact that Senator Rand Paul supports “tort reform” to limit a person’s access to civil justice and put caps on amounts awarded by a jury. Hopefully, he will learn from this experience and reject any future attempts to limit the amount of damages that can be awarded by a Jury in a civil case.

Air Assault-When Airline Passengers Are Assaulted

The Airline Industry is taking its lumps this month.   First, there was the United Airlines incident where a man was forcibly removed from an airplane because he did not give up his seat for Airline Employees.  This weekend another story broke.  This time an American Airline employee wrestled a stroller away from a mother of young twins.  In doing so, the stroller struck the woman in the face.  This arguably constitutes assault. I say arguably because we don't have the full story, and have to rely on media reports.

However, rather than doing the right thing and immediately apologizing and attempting to make it right.  The Airline Employees chose to escalate the situation and one employee attempted to engage a male passenger who was attempting to stand up for the young mother in a fight.   The Airline Employees could not have done a poorer job if they tried.   

This is another case of Airlines losing control over a situation, and highlights their poor training and lack of compassion for passengers.  I had previously written on steps you should take if you are injured on an airline.  Click here to find out more.  If you or someone you know were injured on an airplane call 503.224.1658 for more information.  Jeremiah Ross is happy to provide you a free case evaluation.   Please remember this post could be considered attorney advertising and is not meant to be construed as legal advice. PLEASE Call a Lawyer and do not rely on this post.

Flying the Un-Friendly Skies...Injuries on Commercial Flights

Let's face it, flying is not what it used to be.   Airlines are making record profits, but flying conditions seem to be getting worse.   The recent events on a United Flight highlight the fact that most Airlines put their Corporate priorities above the passengers comfort and safety. That incident was an anomaly, but every year countless passengers are injured aboard commercial airplanes.  Many injuries are minor, but some can be major.  Below is a list of the most common types of injuries:.   

Baggage Incidents: Many passenger injuries are caused by baggage.  Passengers often whack each other with bags as they are attempting to lift them and load them into the overhead bins.  Baggage also may fall out if the bin is not latched properly, malfunctions, or when people open the overhead bins after the flight.  These heavy bags can land on a person's head and cause severe neck and head injuries.  They may also cause bruising and swelling or torn muscles and ligaments on other areas of the body.

Turbulence or Rough Landings:   People can be injured by getting jostled around on planes as they are flying through unstable air or during a rough  landing.   This unstable air is called turbulence.   Neck and back injuries can result depending on the intensity and duration of the turbulence or rough landing.  The USA Today recently wrote an article articulating the various ways turbulence may injure passengers.  For example turbulence may cause the plane to shake so violently that overhead bins may open causing baggage to fall out, drinks may spill, and equipment may fall on passengers.  


Hot Liquid Spills: Hot Coffee and Hot Tea pose a danger to passengers.  A spill of hot coffee or tea on a person can cause serious burns, scarring, pain, and discomfort.  Many of these spills happen while the cup of hot liquid is being transferred from the flight attendant to the passenger. 

Assaults:  Assaults are becoming more common on commercial flights. "Air Rage" is becoming more common as more and more passengers are crammed into smaller and smaller spaces.   In 2015 there were almost 11,000 incidents of air rage. These assaults can range from pushing people to a passenger brutally attacking another passenger.  

Sexual Assaults: Sexual Assaults on Commercial flights are not something we usually think about.  However, they do occur. A recent article noted it is hard to determine the number of assaults because typically 75% of sexual assaults go unreported. Usually they involve a drunk individual that gropes and touches another without their permission.  Sometimes these sexual assaults involve incidents of adult passengers groping a minor.   

Is The Airline Responsible for Your Injuries?  If you were injured on a commercial flight the airline may be responsible for your injuries.  This obviously depends on the facts. However, people on international commercial flights enjoy certain protections provided by treaties and Federal Law.   This may entitle a person injured on a plane to compensation even if the airline did little or anything to cause the injury.  These types of incidents usually require a lawyer to get involved, because Airlines often do not take these claims seriously.

What to Do if You Are Injured on a Commercial Air Flight?

  1. Obviously if you are injured you need to seek medical treatment first and foremost.
  2. Ensure you keep all documents from the flights.   Try and keep your boarding pass, even though most of them are available on-line even after the flight has concluded.  
  3. Do your best to get the passengers full names, addresses, and phone numbers that are in the seats surrounding yours.  Finding witnesses can be difficult if you don't have the witnesses contact information.  
  4. Take Photos:  If possible take photos of the area where the injury occurred.  A video is even better. 
  5. Alert a Flight Attendant and Ask to Make an Incident report:  Alert a flight attendant to the injury and tell them to talk to a witness to find out what happened.  Get the flight attendant's name.
  6. If a crime has been committed contact law enforcement once you are able to do so.  Ensure the Flight Attendant contacts law enforcement.
  7. Call a lawyer at 503.224.1658 if you have further questions.

If you or someone you know has been injured on an airplane call Ross Law LLC.  Jeremiah Ross is happy to provide you a free case evaluation.  Call 503.224.1658 for your free case evaluation. Please remember the law is always changing.  Do not rely on this post and rely on the law and advice from a lawyer.   This blog can be considered attorney advertising and is for advertising purposes only. 

Victim of a Crime? Know Your Rights...

The Criminal Justice system can be a confusing, intimidating, and scary place for crime victims. Many victims do not know what is expected from them, who the lawyers are that are involved, and more importantly they don't know their rights.  Many times the District Attorney's office does their best to keep victims involved in the case, but DA's and victim advocates are often overworked and simply do not have the time or resources to ensure every victim's rights are understood and honored. This post is meant to provide you some information to assist you in asserting your rights.   Below is a list of things you should know if you were a crime victim:

Who Is The District Attorney:  The District Attorney is an attorney that represents the State of Oregon in criminal matters.  They are also called prosecutors, DAs, or DDAs.  Basically each county has a District Attorney (DA).  That person has an office that employs deputy DA's to hold people responsible that have been accused of breaking the law.  

Is the DA the Victim's Attorney:  No, the DA represents the State of Oregon.  The victim is a citizen of the State and has unique rights under the law, but the DA is not the victim's lawyer.  If you believe you the defendant should be responsible for paying for your harms and losses you should seek a "civil lawyer" such as myself to represent you.  The criminal justice system and the Civil Justice System are not the same.  For example, the District Attorney cannot obtain damages for emotional harm, but a civil lawyer can. For more information click here.

Who are "Victim Advocates:"   District Attorneys offices have persons that are victims and advocates that do their best to ensure victims rights are honored.  In Multnomah County the DA has a Victim Assistance Program or VAP.  To learn more click here.

What are Oregon Crime Victim's Rights:  Oregon Victims have numerous rights.  I have posted some, but not all, of the rights below.   Please remember the law is constantly changing and it is best to consult with an attorney or the District Attorney to ensure the law has not changed.  Do not rely solely on this post.  With that said, see the rights below:

  1. Crime Victims Must Be Informed of Their Rights:  A “law enforcement agency” shall notify a crime victim about his or her rights as soon as reasonably practicable. Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(g); ORS 147.417(1). 
  2. If You Request, Then You Must Be Informed of All Critical Stages of the Proceedings: A crime victim has, upon specific request, the right to be informed in advance of any critical stage of the proceedings held in open court when the defendant or alleged youth offender will be present and to be present at any such stage of the proceedings. Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(a) 
  3. The DA Must Account for Your Schedule when Setting a Trial Date: “When resetting any trial date or setting any court hearing requiring the presence of the victim, the court shall take the victim into consideration. The court shall inquire of the district attorney as to whether the victim has been informed of the prospective date and whether that date is convenient for the victim.” ORS 136.145
  4. If Requested, You Have a Right to Be informed if The Defendant's Probation May be Revoked: Right to Notice of Probation Violation/Revocation Hearings Upon request, a crime victim has the right “to be notified of any hearing before the court that may result in the revocation of the defendant’s probation for a felony or person Class A misdemeanor.” ORS 137.545(11). 
  5. You Have a Right to Be Present at Critical-Stage Proceedings if Requested: A crime victim has, upon specific request, the right to be present at any critical stage of the proceedings held in open court when the defendant or alleged youth offender will be present and to be present at any such stage of the proceedings. Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(a).
  6. You Right to Have a Person with you (with some exceptions): The victim of a person crime who was at least 15 years old when the crime is committed, may select a personal representative to accompany the victim to phases of the investigation and prosecution of the crime except for grand jury proceedings and certain child-abuse assessments. ORS 147.425. 
  7. If English is Your Second Language You Have a Right to Court Appointed Interpreter “In any criminal proceeding, the court shall appoint a qualified interpreter and make available appropriate assistive communication devices whenever it is necessary to interpret the proceedings to a victim who is a person with a disability and who seeks to exercise in open court a right that is granted by Article I, section 42 or 43, of the Oregon Constitution, including the right to be present at a critical stage of the proceeding.” 
  8. You Have a Right to Be Heard at a Pretrial Release Hearings if Requested: Under the Oregon Constitution a crime victim has, upon specific request, the right to “be heard at the pretrial release hearing.” Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(a). 
  9. You Have a Right to Be Heard at Sentencing A crime victim has the constitutional right to be heard “at the sentencing or juvenile court delinquency disposition.” Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(a). Under statute, a crime victim has the right at sentencing “to reasonably
    express any views concerning the crime, the person responsible, the impact of the
    crime on the victim, and the need for restitution and compensatory fine.” ORS
    137.013. A trial court must inquire whether the victim wishes to be heard before
    imposing sentence. ORS 147.512(3). 
  10. You Have a Right to Be Heard at DUII Diversion Hearing: If a DUII offense involves damage to property of a person other than the defendant, the victim of the property damage has a right to be present and to be heard at any hearing on a petition for a diversion agreement. ORS 813.222(1). 
  11. You Have a Right to Consult with the DA in any Plea Negotiation involving a Violent Felony: A crime victim has the constitutional right “to be consulted, upon request, regarding plea negotiations involving any violent felony.” Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(f). In prosecutions involving violent felonies, a prosecutor must—if requested by the victim—make “reasonable efforts to consult the victim before making a plea offer and before entering into a final plea agreement.” ORS 147.512(2)(a).
  12. You Have a Right to a Speedy Disposition: By law, crime victims have the rights to “have the trial or adjudication, including the imposition and execution of the sentence or disposition, conducted with all practicable speed” and “to the prompt and final conclusion of the criminal or juvenile delinquency proceeding in any related appellate or post-judgment proceeding.” ORS 147.430(a)-(b); see also ORS 138.627(1)(a) (victims have the right to have their “schedule taken into account [by the trial court] in scheduling . . . post-conviction proceedings”).  T
  13. You Have a Right to Records of Proceedings: A crime victim has a statutory and constitutional right to a copy of the record of a criminal proceeding. See Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(e) (a crime victim has “[t]he right to have a copy of a transcript of any court proceeding in open court, if one is otherwise prepared”); ORS 147.419 (a crime victim may obtain a copy of a transcript or audio or videotape of criminal proceeding held in open court at the victim’s expense).
  14. You Have a Right to Information about the Defendant: Under the Oregon Constitution, a crime victim has “[t]he right, upon request, to obtain information about the conviction, sentence, imprisonment, criminal history and future release from physical custody of the criminal defendant or convicted criminal and equivalent information regarding the alleged youth offender or youth offender[.]” Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(b).
  15. You Have Right to Information about HIV or Other Communicable Diseases: A victim of a crime involving “the transmission of bodily fluids from one person to another” can request that defendant submit to “a test for HIV and any other communicable disease.” ORS 135.139(1).
  16. You Have a Right to Information about Emergency Contraception: A sexual assault victim has the right to “unbiased, medically and factually accurate written and oral information about emergency contraception” from the hospital providing the victim care. ORS 435.254(1). 
  17. Right to Information in DUII Proceedings Where You Were in a Crash with a DUII Driver:  In any prosecution arising from an automobile collision in which the defendant is alleged to have been DUII, the prosecuting attorney shall make available to a victim, upon request, reports and information disclosed to the defendant. ORS 135.857. That requirement applies to juvenile proceedings. ORS 419C.270 
  18. You Have a Right to Refuse to Speak or Communicate with Anyone Representing the Defendant: Under the Oregon Constitution, crime victims have “[t]he right to refuse an interview, deposition or other discovery request by the criminal defendant or other person acting on behalf of the criminal defendant provided, however, that nothing in this paragraph shall restrict any other constitutional right of the defendant to discovery against the state.” Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(c). Under statute, crime victims “may not be required to be interviewed or deposed by or give discovery to the defendant or the defendant’s attorney unless the victim consents.” ORS 135.970(3). A defense attorney must inform victims of the identity and capacity of persons contacting the victim on behalf of the defense and the victim’s right to have “a district attorney, assistant attorney general or other attorney or advocate present during any interview or other contact,” ORS 135.970(2). 
  19. If You Were Raped, You Have the Legal Protection to Prevent the Defense From Asking about Your Reputation or Opinion of Past Sexual Behavior. This is called the Rape-Shield Law. In a prosecution for rape, sodomy, unlawful sexual penetration, or sexual abuse, or in a prosecution for an attempt to commit one of these crimes, the following evidence is not admissible: Reputation or opinion evidence of the past sexual behavior of an alleged victim; or reputation or opinion evidence presented for the purpose of showing that the manner of dress of an alleged victim incited the crime or indicated consent. In a prosecution for these crimes or attempt to commit one of these crimes, evidence of a victim’s past sexual behavior other than reputation or opinion evidence is also inadmissible unless admitted in accordance with the Oregon Evidence Code and is evidence that relates to the motive or bias of the alleged victim, is necessary to rebut or explain scientific, medical or testimonial evidence offered by the state, is necessary to establish the identity of the victim or is otherwise constitutionally required to be admitted. ORS 40.210. Oregon Evidence Code (OEC) Rule 412
  20. You Have a Right to Be Safe and Protected from the Defendant: Under the Oregon Constitution, a crime victim has “[t]he right to be reasonably protected from the criminal defendant or the convicted criminal throughout the criminal justice process” and “[t]he right to have decisions by the court regarding the pretrial release of a criminal defendant based upon the principle of reasonable protection of the victim and the public, as well as the likelihood that the criminal defendant will appear for trial.” Or. Const. art I, § 43(1). 
  21. The Court Must Order No Contact with the Victim at Pre-Trial Release Hearing: When a defendant is released pretrial, the trial court or releasing authority must include a condition that defendant have no contact with the victim. See ORS 135.970 (4)(a) 
  22. You Have a Right to Restitution (Money), but it is limited to out of pocket expenses: Under the Oregon Constitution, a crime victim has “[t]he right to receive prompt restitution from the criminal convicted criminal who caused the victim’s loss or injury.” Or Const, Art I, § 42(1)(d). Upon proof of “nature and amount of damages,” a victim is entitled to full restitution for “economic damages” caused by a defendant’s criminal conduct unless the victim consents to a lesser amount. ORS 137.106(1). Economic damages are: objectively verifiable monetary losses including but not limited to reasonable charges necessarily incurred for medical, hospital, nursing and rehabilitative services and other health care services, burial and memorial expenses, loss of income and past * * * impairment of earning capacity, reasonable and necessary expenses incurred for substitute domestic services, recurring loss to an estate, damage to reputation that is economically verifiable, reasonable and necessarily incurred costs due to loss of use of property and reasonable costs incurred for repair or for replacement of damaged property, whichever is less. ORS 137.103(2); ORS 31.710(2)(a). 
  23. You May Have a Right to a Compensatory Fine:  A court may order compensatory fines payable to a crime victim, which may be imposed in addition to statutory restitution, “as a penalty for the commission of a crime resulting in an injury for which the person injured by the act constituting the crime has a remedy by civil action[.]” ORS 137.101. This is a convoluted area of the law in which the statute arguably allows the judge to impose a fine and instead of the fine being paid to the State of Oregon the fine is paid directly to the Victim.  Their are nuances regarding how this is done, and a District Attorney or Civil Lawyer such as myself should be contacted.  Feel free to call me at 503.224.1658.
  24. The Crime Victim Compensation Fund May Pay for Medical Bills, Counseling, but it is limited: A crime victim may be eligible for compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Account administered by the Department of Justice. See ORS 147.035 (discussing compensable losses). An emergency award granted “pending a final decision in [a compensation] claim” may be available. ORS 147.055. Oregon law specifically provides for compensation for HIV testing and counseling when a crime involves the transmission of bodily fluids, ORS 135.139(8), and for a sexual-assault medical assessment. ORS 147.395. 

The bottom line is if you are a crime victim you have rights.  You should assert them.  Too often defendant's rights appear to trump victim's rights.   That should not occur if you assert your rights and the District Attorney and the Court honors your rights.  If you have any questions about your rights, call me for a free crime victim consultation at 503.224.1658.   PLEASE REMEMBER THE LAW IS CONSTANTLY CHANGING AND THESE RIGHTS ALSO CHANGE.   Please consult with a lawyer or District Attorney to learn your actual rights.   This post, this blog, and this web-site may be considered attorney advertising.  


Who Can be Held Liable if You Are Injured by a Rowdy Tailgater or a DUII Driver?

It is College Football season again.  Oregonians flock to Autzen Stadium or Reser Stadium to see their beloved Ducks and Beavers battle on the turf.  Here in Portland people flood into Providence Park to see the Portland State Pilots.  These fun outings can become tragic when alcohol, drugs, and/or stupidity meld together.  When that occurs  people can get hurt. That leads us to the question, who is liable for a person injured by an intoxicated person.  The obvious answer is the intoxicated person that actually injures another person.  However, the analysis does not stop here.

 Oregon's Dram shop law allows other people to be held responsible for the intoxicated person's actions.   This law allows a person injured by an intoxicated person to hold the social host liable for over-serving an intoxicated person.  Also, the bars around Providence Park in Portland should be aware they can be liable to a person injured by an over-intoxicated person if the visibly-intoxicated person was served alcohol while visibly intoxicated.   

Examples always make this easier to understand.   Imagine Jon is going to the PSU game and stops off at a bar for a drink.  Jon stays at the bar with his friends and becomes trashed.  He consumes eight shots of whisky in an hour and is struggling to stand.  The bar tender continues to serve him despite his rowdy behavior.  Jon then walks towards Providence to see his beloved Pilots play.  On the way he sees a person wearing a Montana Jersey.   Without provocation, Jon attacks the Montana Fan.  Jon seriously injured the Montana fan.  The Montana fan has a permanent brain injury and hundreds of thousands of dollars of medical bills.   Jon is prosecuted, but doesn't have any money, so the Montana fan has little hope of Jon ever paying his medical bills.  However, the Montana Fan's lawyer discovers Jon was drinking at a bar and was over-served.  The Attorney sends the bar the proper notice.  The bar's insurance policy may cover the Montana Fan's medical bills.   The bar may also be forced to compensate Montana Fan for all of his harms and losses from the beating, and the bar may have to pay the injured person Punitive Damages.  

Video Courtesy of youtube.  Ross Law Does not Condone fighting. Tailgate fight


Imagine another situation where Jenny is tailgating at the Ducks game.  She is at a tailgate party hosted by Marcia.   Marcia provided a few bottles of liquor and has cases of beer for anyone to drink.  Jenny gets into the Vodka, and Marcia keeps it flowing.  Marcia has a rule at her tailgates "Hell no H20," and continues to serve Jenny more and more alcohol.  Jenny begins to stagger around and vomits all over a neighboring tailgater's car.  Marcia gives Jenny one more Vodka Tonic as Jenny staggers off.  Jenny then gets into her car and attempts to drive to her aparment near campus.  Jenny begins to drive home and then veers off of the road and crashes into a group of students walking to the Duck's game.   The three students are seriously injured. Jenny's minimal $25,000/$50,000 policy limits is quickly subsumed by the students hospital bills.  One of the Student's Personal Injury attorney reads the police report and discovers that Jenny was drinking at Marcia's tailgate party.  The student's attorney sends a demand to Marcia for the "dram shop" liability.  Marcia's $1,000,000.00 umbrella policy covers the crash.  The attorney also believes the University was not providing adequate supervision because there were other reports of Marcia's guest being out of control and drinking heavily.  In fact, one of the Security Guards didn't do anything when another tailgater complained of the heavy drinking and was concerned Jenny may drive home.  The Student's attorney may now be able to prove a case of negligence against the Security Company and the University.  The student may collect maximum compensation for his injuries because all of the wrongdoers will be held accountable.

These are just two examples of social host and dram shop liability.   Anytime a person is injured by  a heavily intoxicated person social host or dram shop liability may come into play.  For more information about dram shop liability read my previous article.  It may assist an injured person obtaining compensation that would otherwise not be available.   These cases often involve assault and battery, sexual assault, rape, and DUII driving.  

If you have been injured, assaulted, or rapted as a result of a heavily intoxicated person in Oregon please call me at 503.224.1658 to discuss your case.  Ross Law provides Free Consultations.  We do not charge you anything unless we recover. Please remember this post is not to be considered legal advice. Also, please remember the law is constantly changing.  Please consult with an Oregon Personal Injury or Crime Victim Attorney at 503.224.1658 instead of relying on this post.  This Post, the web-site, and blog may be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING!

Uber Sexual Assault Survivor Fights Back and Sues Uber

I have previously posted about safety issues with Uber, Lyft, and other ride shares.  These ride share programs market themselves as a safe alternative to getting around town. However, that is not always the case.  A Los Angeles woman was brutally raped by an Uber driver that picked her up.


She is fighting back and filed a lawsuit against Uber for its failure to conduct a background check.  Currently Uber simply has an on-line application process and hires a company to run cursory criminal record checks.  Therefore, if for whatever reason the criminal records check doesn't pick up an issue then passengers are put at risk of being assaulted, raped, or drugged by a ride-share driver.  These lawsuits are necessary to force the ride-share programs to take pro-active steps to discover any possible issue with their drivers.   For more information about the Los Angeles case click here:  LA Times Article.

If you or someone you know has been assaulted, sexually assaulted, or raped by a ride share driver then please call the police immediately.  If you have questions about your civil rights and your rights as a crime victim, please call Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658.  It won't cost you anything and you should know your rights.   

School Assaults-Avoidable Tragedies

School-yard fights are nothing new.  There have probably been fights at school since the first school opened.   However, it appears the fights are getting more serious.  Teenagers are displaying a new level of brutality to others.   What was once a school yard fight between two kids has become a scenario where numerous kids are jumping one kid, or the kids are fighting with weapons.   These attacks can have tragic results. 

I recently read an article about the young girl that was brutally beaten to death in a high-school bathroom.    Witnesses note that the fight initially started out between the deceased victim and another girl.  Then other girls joined the fight to attack the victim.  Within minutes the deceased victim was beaten to death in a high-school bathroom.  

The question becomes what do we do to prevent these incidents.   I recently settled a case against an Oregon educational institution where a young woman was attacked by a young man.   While investigating that case it became apparent that young people are not going to be safe at school.  Security Officers are only as good as the people that train them, and the budget won't permit hiring more security. Teachers rely on security and law-enforcement to address any violent actions, and may not want to deal with the problem children.  Despite having security and law enforcement on many campuses the brutal attacks persist.   Many of these on-campus attacks could have been prevented or stopped before things became serious if people were simply doing their jobs.

If you, or someone you know, has been attacked at school you should call a lawyer to hold all people accountable.  Many times the lapses in security will not be addressed until the schools are forced to due to media pressure or pressure from a lawsuit.   Jeremiah Ross at Ross Law LLC is happy to discuss whether or not you may have a civil case against the responsible parties.  Please call 503.224.1658 to chat with Jeremiah.    

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS BLOG IS AN ATTORNEY ADVERTISEMENT.  Your case maybe unique so please contact a lawyer and do not rely solely on the contents of this blog. 

Visitors Fed Up With Localism Use The Law To Fight Back

Many people perceive surfers as being a mellow peaceful friendly group of people.   However, there is also an ugly side of the surfing community.  Many local surfers use violence, threats, intimidation, vandalism and even sexual abuse to drive off other surfers.   These "locals" fear there are not enough good waves for everyone, so they use these tactics to ensure their local waves do not become overcrowded.  As a surfer myself, I have witnessed localism all up and down the West Coast.

A recent LA Times article chronicles the what happens when localism goes unchecked.   The article focuses on the "Bay Boys" in Palos Verdes Estates, Ca.   The Bay Boys is a group of surfing men that come from wealthy backgrounds that have lived and surfed Lunada Bay for years.   They are known as being notoriously hostile to visitors and any surfer that is not known to them.   They constantly verbally abuse visitors, throw rocks at them, and use whatever means necessary to keep people from surfing Lunada Bay.  Law Enforcement is often of little help and does little if anything to hold the Bay Boys accountable for their actions.


People finally got sick of the Bay Boys' antics and have filed a Class Action Lawsuit against them in an attempt to restore law and order to Lunada Bay.   The lawsuit is seeking to prevent the Bay Boys from congregating at Lunada Bay and will force the police to investigate incidents at Lunada Bay.

If you are the victim of a crime and would like to know your rights and remedies against the wrongdoer, please call Portland Oregon Attorney Jeremiah Ross.  Please call Ross Law LLC at 503.224.1658.  Also, please remember this post is for informational purposes only.   If you have any questions related to the law or the issues in this post please call a lawyer.