FAQs

Case Companion - Juvenile

After reporting the crime...

Police Response

When a crime is initially reported to law enforcement, an officer is sent to the crime scene to find out what happened.

An Arrest may be made at that time and the youth may be

The officer will gather evidence and write a report that will be sent to the Juvenile Services Division with a type of charge indicated on the report.

Juvenile Services Division Response

The Juvenile Services Division will then forward any cases that don't qualify for early intervention diversion to the District Attorney's Office.

District Attorney response

The Office of the District Attorney assigns the report to one of the Juvenile Deputy District Attorneys.

  • If the youth is in detention the report will be evaluated by the District Attorney's Office the next business day to determine if there is enough evidence to file charges.
  • If the youth is not in detention the deputy district attorney will review the police report in the next few weeks:

At this time one of four things will occur

  • No charges are filed due to lack of evidence;
  • Further investigation is required and law enforcement is asked to obtain the information;
  • The report will be sent to the Juvenile Services Division for informal handling;
  • Charges are filed in a document called a petition and the adjudication process begins for formal handling.

If charges are filed, a victim advocate from the District Attorney's Office will work with you throughout the juvenile court process. You can expect a phone-call from the District Attorney's Office and you will also receive information in the mail that explains your rights as a victim of juvenile crime as well as information to submit documentation for restitution, if you suffered financial loss as a result of the crime.

Generally, the juvenile court has jurisdiction over persons under the age of 18 who commit acts that if committed by an adult would be a crime. This includes violations of city, county, or state laws.

Some crimes, often called "Measure 11 offenses" are handled in adult court. A juvenile, 15 years or older, who commits a Measure 11 offense is considered an adult in the criminal justice process. If the juvenile in your case has been charged as an adult, contact the District Attorney's office for further information about your rights and refer to the crime victim's rights in the adult cases portion of Case Companion.

The Formal Process

Youth not Held In Custody

If the youth is not in held in secure custody the Deputy District Attorney will contact you soon after charges are issued. The District Attorney's Office will also mail information to you that addresses Victim Rights and requesting restitution.

Youth Held In Custody

  • Once charges are filed by the District Attorney's Office, the adjudication process begins and the youth is assigned a Juvenile Court Counselor who will gather information to present to the court at all hearings.
  • If the youth was held in custody there will be a preliminary hearing the next business day where the Judge will decide if the youth should be released, released with conditions or held in detention.
  • You will be contacted by the District Attorney's office about this hearing.
  • This is not a trial, it is only to decide if the youth can be released. The judge is evaluating community safety and if the youth will return to court for future hearings
  • The youth is present at this hearing.
  • During the adjudication process, the youth is assigned to a Juvenile Court Counselor who will be gathering information to present to the court at all hearings.
  • The Deputy District Attorney will present any information from the victim, and their office will be responsible to inform you of court hearings and any rights that you choose to request.

Where do preliminary hearings take place?

  • Preliminary hearings take place at the Juvenile Justice Complex and begin each day at 1:00 p.m.
Juvenile Justice Complex
1401 NE 68th Ave
Portland, Oregon 97213
  • While your case will likely take five to ten minutes, you may be at the courthouse for an hour or more, as several preliminary hearings take place each day.
  • When you arrive, you will be required to go through a metal detector because the hearing takes place in a courthouse.

Who are my resources at the preliminary hearing?
  • A Victim Advocate from the District Attorney's Office will be available for support if you choose to participate in the hearing.
Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
What are my rights at the preliminary hearing?
  • If you are the direct victim of the crime charged, or the parent of a minor child who is the victim of crime, you have rights throughout this process.
  • You have the right to be present for the preliminary hearing.
  • You have a right to make a statement regarding the youth's release.
  • If you have questions about your rights you can contact the District Attorney's Office.
Am I required to attend the preliminary hearing?
  • You are not required to attend the preliminary hearing, but you do have a right to attend and to make a statement at this time.
  • If you are unable to attend but would like to participate you can contact the Victim Advocate in the District Attorney's Office to explore participation options, including being present over the phone or having a statement read for you in court.
Are interpreters available?

Yes. If you would like to request an interpreter contact the District Attorney's Office as early as possible.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222

The Formal Process

The Court Process: Resolving the Petition

Most cases in juvenile court can be resolved in the following ways:

  • Admissions (Plea hearing)
  • Trial
  • Dismissal

Admissions (Plea Hearing)
  • This stage of the process is much like a plea hearing in the adult criminal justice process.
  • The youth will be present at this hearing.
  • Many youths choose to admit to charges.
  • In this case the Victim Advocate will notify you of this hearing as well as your right to attend and make a victim impact statement.
  • Disposition, is often addressed at the same hearing.
Who are my resources at the admissions hearing?

A Victim Advocate from the District Attorney's Office will be available for support if you choose to participate in the hearing.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
What are my rights at the admissions hearing?
  • You have the right to be present for the admissions hearing.
  • You have a right to make a victim impact statement.
  • If you have questions, contact the District Attorney's Office.
Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
Am I required to attend the admissions hearing?
  • You are not required to attend the admissions hearing, but you do have a right to attend and to make a victim impact statement.
  • If you are unable to attend but would like to participate you can contact the Victim Advocate in the District Attorney's Office to explore participation options, including being present over the phone or having a statement read for you in court.
Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
Are interpreters available?

Yes. If you would like to request an interpreter contact the District Attorney's Office as early as possible.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222

The Formal Process

Trial

  • Every person who is charged with a crime has a right to a trial before a judge.
  • If the youth being charged does not admit to charges, the case will go to trial.
  • Trials are heard before a judge, there are no jury trials in juvenile cases.
  • Subpoenas are issued to anyone who will be testifying in the trial.
  • As the victim, you have a right to remain in the courtroom for the duration of the trail, though other witnesses are only allowed in the courtroom when they testify.
  • Trial schedules can be complicated due to legal requirements. As a result the trial may be reset multiple times. Because of this, we encourage you to call the phone number on the subpoena to verify if the trial is still going forward.
  • If at the trial, the youth is found under the jurisdiction of the court (guilty if an adult) then the case goes to disposition (sentencing).

What can I expect if I am required to testify at trial?
  • If the case goes to trial, you will likely receive a court order called a subpoena to come to court and testify.
  • As a witness testifying at a trial, you will be sworn in (make a promise to tell the truth) and sit in the witness chair (the chair is at the front of the room facing the rest of the courtroom).
  • You will be asked questions, first by the District Attorney and then by the Youth's Attorney. The District Attorney may follow up with additional questions if needed.
  • You may hear one of the attorney's say "objection" after a question is asked. If this happens, the Judge will direct you on what to do.
  • Please talk with the Victim Advocate with the District Attorney's office if you have additional questions or concerns about testifying at trial.
Who are my resources at the trial?

A Victim Advocate from the District Attorney's Office will be available for support, and the Deputy District Attorney will be able to answer any questions you may have.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
Are interpreters available?

Yes. If you would like to request an interpreter contact the District Attorney's Office as early as possible.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222

The Formal Process

Disposition
  • Disposition (called sentencing in adult court) is a hearing where the judge hears the recommendations by the District Attorney, the Defense Attorney, and the Juvenile Court Counselor and then determines the consequences for the youth.
  • Disposition may happen immediately following a plea/admission hearing or a trial.
  • If the judge requires more time to gather other information the disposition may be set over for another date and time.
  • Victims are encouraged to write a victim impact statement to the judge (whether or not they can be present at sentencing) explaining how the crime has affected them.
  • Victims have a right to be heard at sentencing, either in person, through a representative of the District Attorney's Office by phone, or in writing.
  • If you don't wish to be present but would like your statement read in court, you can arrange this with the District Attorney's Office.
Who are my resources at disposition?

A Victim Advocate from the District Attorney's Office will be available for support, and the Deputy District Attorney will be able to answer any questions you may have.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
What are my rights at disposition?
  • You have a right to be notified in advance of disposition and to attend this hearing.
  • You have a right to make a statement at disposition.
Am I required to attend disposition?

No, you are not required to attend, though you have a right to attend and to be notified of the hearing in advance.

Are interpreters available?

Yes. If you would like to request an interpreter contact the District Attorney's Office as early as possible.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222

The Informal Process

  • The Juvenile Services Division will send the following information to victims:
    • information about crime victim rights
    • information about restitution and how to request it, if you suffered a financial loss as a result of the crime
    • a request for you to fill out a victim impact statement, to share about your experience being harmed.
    • Information about the Restorative Dialogue Program and how to participate.
  • There are no court hearings and a Juvenile Court Counselor will meet with the youth and create a contract, known as a Formal Accountability Agreement (FAA).
  • The agreement usually includes conditions related to accountability and skill building, such as participation in school or treatment, paying restitution, or completing community service.
  • If the youth does not complete the FAA then the Juvenile Services Division may send the police report back to the District Attorney's Office to determine whether or not it is appropriate to handle formally

What happens when the youth is on probation?

Once the youth is on probation the case will be transferred back to the Juvenile Services Division for supervision for the duration of probation. If you have questions during this time, the youth's Juvenile Court Counselor can provide you with information about your case.

Multnomah County Juvenile Services Division
(503) 988-3460
What are my rights at this stage?

  • You have a right to restitution, if you suffered financial loss as as result of the crime and restitution was ordered in your case.
  • You have a right to be notified of probation violations, though this is a right you must request.

What if I still need or want a Victim Advocate?

For additional support, contact the Victim Advocate with the Juvenile Services Division.

Chelsea Penning
She/Her pronouns
Crime Victim Advocate-Crime Victim Services Unit
Multnomah County Department of Community Justice
(503) 988-2737
What if a youth commits a probation violation?

If a youth commits a probation violation there will be a probation violation hearing before the court. The youth will be present at this hearing.

What are my rights at this stage?

  • You have a right to be notified of probation violation hearings, and must request this right if you would like notifications.
  • You have a right to attend probation violation hearings.

What are my rights as a victim of juvenile crime?

General Rights

Crime Victims' Rights in the juvenile justice system apply to the victim of an offense as well as to the parent or legal guardian of a minor victim.

  • Your right to justice includes the right to a meaningful role in the juvenile justice process, to be treated with dignity and respect, to fair and impartial treatment, and to reasonable protection from the youth.
  • Many victims' rights are automatic, although you may need to "tell" someone you want to receive them.
  • Other rights you must specifically request to receive the right. One way to do this is to contact the District Attorney's Office or Juvenile Services Division to request these rights.
  • You, your attorney, or, upon your request, the District Attorney, may assert your rights in court.

Automatic Rights

  • You have the right to have a support person with you.
  • If your case involved physical harm or death, you may be able to get financial help for counseling, medical, or death related costs. An advocate can help you to apply for these services.
  • You can attend open court proceedings.
  • You can get 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.
  • Most "personal identifiers" can usually be protected from an alleged youth offender. These include your phone number, address, social security number, date of birth, bank account and credit card account numbers.
  • You or the District Attorney can ask the court to limit the distribution of information and recordings in cases involving sexual or invasion of personal privacy offenses.
Rights that Must be Requested
  • To get certain criminal history information about the youth offender (alleged or adjudicated).
  • That the youth offender adjudicated in your case get testing for HIV if the crime involved the transmission of bodily fluids.

After a Youth is Taken into Custody

Automatic Rights

  • The judge will consider your safety at a release hearing.
  • You can refuse to speak to an attorney or private investigator for the alleged youth offender or adjudicated youth offender.
  • Some cases may be handled informally rather than through the court process. You can ask to be notified of this decision. These can include:
    • Formal Accountability Agreement
Rights that must be requested:
  • To be notified of critical stage hearings.
  • To be notified in advance about the release hearing.
  • To be consulted about the plea in a violent felony case.
  • If you did not have notice of, or an opportunity to be heard at, certain hearings in which the youth offender was released, you can request a hearing to reconsider the release decision.

If Your Case Goes to Adjudication and Disposition

Automatic Rights

  • The court will take your schedule into account when setting trial dates or hearings that you need to attend.
  • Rape shield laws may apply in your case.
  • You have a right to agree or disagree to personal service being performed for you as a condition of probation for a youth offender.
  • If your property is damaged by graffiti, you can allow or refuse to allow, a youth offender on your property to clean it up.
  • You can ask to know the outcome in your case.
Rights that must be requested
  • To express your views at a detention or shelter hearing or at a hearing to review the placement of the youth.
  • To express your views at a disposition (sentencing) in person or in writing.
  • For the court to exclude media television, photography, or recording equipment during sex offense proceedings. The court may deny this request.

After Disposition

Automatic Rights

  • To receive prompt restitution
  • To be heard at a hearing or a motion to set aside, vacate, or dismiss a case
  • The District Attorney's Office will notify you if the youth offender in your case applies for expunction
  • To attend an expunction hearing
  • For youth found Responsible Except for Insanity (REI) there may be additional victim services available from the Oregon Department of Justice. For more information call (503) 378-5348.
Rights that must be requested
  • To be notified about juvenile review hearings including hearings where probation may be revoked.
  • To be notified of expunction hearings.
  • To be notified of hearings for relief from sex offender reporting requirements.
In sex offense cases
  • You have a right to not be contacted by the sex offender adjudicated in your case.
  • For information about registered sex offenders call:
Oregon State Police Sex Offender Information
(503) 378-3725 x44429

Youth committed to the Oregon Youth Authority (OYA)

  • Rights that must be requested
    • To be notified when the adjudicated youth is released from an OYA Youth Correctional Facility. You must give your information directly to OYA and keep this information up to date with any changes.
    • You may also receive automated notifications of release from an OYA Youth Correctional Facility by registering with VINE (Victim Information Notification Everyday).

Oregon Youth Authority

Youth Placed Under the Jurisdiction of the Juvenile Psychiatric Security Review Board (JPSRB)

  • Automatic Rights
    • You have the right to attend JPSRB hearings
    • You have the right to speak at a JPSRB hearing
  • Rights that must get requested
    • To get certain information about the youth's (patient) case from the JPSRB if the youth is under their jurisdiction. You must give your contact information directly to the JPSRB.
    • To be notified of JPSRB hearings.

Other Legal Information

The following information applies to the victim, or to the legal guardian of a minor child who is the victim.

  • Your immigration status should not affect your rights as a crime victim.
  • Immigrant victims may have additional legal options.
  • 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 visit www.doj.state.or.us/victims

Can I participate in a Restorative Justice Process?

What is restorative justice?

Restorative justice is a philosophy and practice that encourages constructive responses to harm. It brings the needs and voice of those who have been harmed (victims), those who have harmed (youth), and the community into process that repair harms and rebuild relationships.

Does Multnomah County offer Restorative Justice?

Multnomah County partners with a community based Crime Victim Services Program at Lutheran Community Services NW to offer a Restorative Dialogue Program for victims of juvenile crime in Multnomah County. Whether your case is being handled formally or informally the Restorative Dialogue Program provides victims of crime an opportunity to:

  • Meet face to face, in a facilitated dialogue, with the youth that caused you harm;
  • Share about the impact the crime had on you and how it has affected your life;
  • Ask questions about the crime that only the youth can answer;
  • Have a voice in how the youth repairs the harm to the extent possible, in a way that is meaningful to you.

How can I find out more about the Restorative Dialogue Program or request to participate?

Contact the Restorative Justice Coordinator with the Juvenile Services Division to learn more about how the process works or to request participation.

Deidra Gibson-Cairns
She/Her pronouns
Restorative Justice Coordinator
(503) 988-5627

Frequently Asked Questions

+ How can I request victim rights and notifications?

There are multiple ways that you can request victim rights, depending on whether your case is being handled formally in court or informally by the Juvenile Services Division.

In both cases, you will receive a letter in the mail from either the District Attorney's Office or the Juvenile Services Division. This letter will include information about your rights as a victim of crime, a Victim Impact Statement form, as well as a request for restitution documentation, if you suffered financial loss as a result of the crime.

  • You may fill out the victim rights notification form and return it by mail to either the District Attorney's Office or Juvenile Services Division, depending on whether your case is being handled formally or informally.
  • If you would like to request restitution, you may return the completed restitution form along with supporting documentation by mail to the District Attorney's Office or the Juvenile Services Division, depending on whether your case is being handled formally or informally.
  • Complete and return the victim impact statement form by mail to the District Attorney's Office or the Juvenile Services Division.

Who to Call

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
Wendy Blanchard
She/Her pronouns
Multnomah County Juvenile Services Division
Restitution Tracking Clerk
(503) 988-4057

What is Restitution?

What is restitution and how does it work?

  • Restitution is money the court or Juvenile Services Division ordered a youth to pay to a victim for economic losses resulting from a crime and is a victim right.
  • This may include costs to replace or repair damaged property, counseling and medical costs, lost wages (not covered by leave) and insurance deductibles paid.
  • Restitution does not include compensation for pain and suffering.
  • To make a request for restitution complete and sign the restitution request sent to you and return it with any supporting documentation as quickly as possible.
  • Without participation from the victim submitting a restitution request and returning supporting documentation, restitution will not be ordered.

Restitution in formal cases

  • The Youth - through their attorney - may agree (stipulate) to the amount requested and be ordered to begin paying restitution.
  • If the Youth disagrees (contests) the amount, a restitution hearing will be scheduled for a judge to determine what, if any, restitution is owed.
  • You will receive a court order (subpoena) to attend a restitution hearing and be asked to testify about the request for restitution.
  • Please contact the Victim Advocate from the District Attorney's Office with any questions about restitution in formal cases.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222

Restitution in informal cases

  • If restitution is a factor in an informal case, paying restitution will be a condition of the youth's Formal Accountability Agreement.
  • Informal cases are often handled quickly, so it is important to return your restitution request and supporting documentation as quickly as possible, within ten days of receiving your victim information packet.

Who to Call

Wendy Blanchard
She/Her pronouns
Multnomah County Juvenile Services Division
Restitution Tracking Clerk
(503) 988-4057

Deidra Gibson-Cairns
She/Her pronouns
Restorative Justice Coordinator
(503) 988-5627

How does the youth earn money to pay restitution?

  • Project Payback is a juvenile program that provides opportunities for youth to earn money toward restitution to their victims as well as to pay court fines and fees.
  • The youth's Juvenile Court Counselor will create a plan with the youth to payback victim/s.
  • The money the youth earns will go directly to the victim/s once a month and the checks will come directly from the state.
  • There are some circumstances that will require a youth to focus on other conditions before participation in Project Payback (for example, a youth may need to participate in drug and alcohol treatment- this would happen before participation in Project Payback).

What if there are multiple victims?

Any money the youth pays is divided equally between all the victims.

What if there are co-defendants?

  • Youth can be ordered to pay restitution "joint and several".
  • Joint and several liability is when multiple parties can be held liable for the same event or act and be responsible for all restitution required.
  • The liable parties would be required to pay the entire damage award, which could be split among multiple parties or could come from just one party.

Other Questions

How do I get a copy of my police report?
  • Complete this juvenile police report request form and hand deliver, mail, fax or email it to the Multnomah County Juvenile Services Division.
  • Please print all information clearly.
  • The request will normally be processed in three to four weeks.
  • If you are mailing the form, please address it to “Attention: Juvenile Records”.

Juvenile Services Division
1401 NE 68th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97213
jcjdocs@multco.us
(503) 988-3460

What does it mean for me if a youth is in the custody of the Oregon Youth Authority (OYA)?
  • OYA serves youth who are unsuccessful at the county level, who need more services than the county can provide, or who commit very serious crimes.
  • As part of Oregon's juvenile justice system, youth are held accountable and have opportunities for reformation, either on parole or probation in the community, or inside secure facilities.
  • If the youth who caused you harm is in the custody of the Oregon Youth Authority and you would like to request any victim rights at this stage, you must contact the Oregon Youth Authority directly to let them know.

Oregon Youth Authority

What if my contact information has changed?

If you'd like to stay informed about your case and have requested rights or restitution, it is important to make sure your contact information is updated. If your case is formal, contact the District Attorney's Office with any updates to your contact information. If your case is informal, contact the Juvenile Services Division. If the youth who caused you harm is under supervision of the Oregon Youth Authority contact the Oregon Youth Authority.

Multnomah County District Attorney's Office
Victims' Assistance Program
(503) 988-3222
Wendy Blanchard
She/Her pronouns
Multnomah County Juvenile Services Division
Restitution Tracking Clerk
(503) 988-4057
Deidra Gibson-Cairns
She/Her pronouns
Restorative Justice Coordinator
(503) 988-5627
Oregon Youth Authority
How can I recover property held as evidence?

Contact the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office at the juvenile court and ask for Victim's Advocate. They can provide information about the release of property from the police.

What should I do if I believe my rights are being violated?

If you believe your rights have not been honored, you can assert a claim of violation of crime victims' rights. There are time limits for this right. To report a violation of your rights as a victim you must contact the Oregon Department of Justice Victim Rights Program Coordinator.

Helen O'Brien
Oregon Department of Justice
Victim Rights Program Coordinator
Helen.Obrien@doj.state.or.us
(503) 373-7205