A Look at 10 Years of Measure 11

CRIME VICTIMS UNITED


Here is a brief timeline of Measure 11 followed by background information and a discussion of frequently-raised issues.

November 8, 1994

Measure 11 passes with 66 percent of the vote. It requires minimum mandatory sentences for specified violent crimes and serious sex offenses, and that convicted criminals serve their sentences in full, and that juveniles aged 15 to 17 accused of the specified crimes stand trial in adult court.

See full text of Measure 11

April 1, 1995

Measure 11 goes into effect.

1995

The Oregon Legislature amends Measure 11 to add Attempted Murder and Conspiracy to Commit Murder.

1997

The Oregon Legislature amends Measure 11 to create exceptions for some Robbery II, Assault II and Kidnapping II cases and adds Compelling Prostitution, Using a Child In a Display of Sexually Explicit Conduct and Arson I when death or serious physical injury is threatened.

See details on Senate Bill 1049

November 7, 2000

Measure 94, which proposed the repeal of Measure 11, is defeated with 73.4 percent of voters opposed.

See full text of Measure 94

2001

The Oregon Legislature amends Measure 11 to create exceptions for some Sex Abuse I, Rape II, Sodomy II and Unlawful Sexual Penetration II cases. The exceptions are available only when the convicted criminal is within 5 years of age of the victim.

See details on House Bill 2379

What crimes are covered by Measure 11?

Murder

Manslaughter in the First Degree

Manslaughter in the Second Degree

Assault in the First Degree

Assault in the Second Degree (with some exceptions)

Kidnapping in the First Degree

Kidnapping in the Second Degree (with some exceptions)

Rape in the First Degree

Rape in the Second Degree (with some exceptions)

Sodomy in the First Degree

Sodomy in the Second Degree (with some exceptions)

Unlawful Sexual Penetration in the First Degree

Unlawful Sexual Penetration in the Second Degree (with some exceptions)

Sex Abuse in the First Degree (with some exceptions)

Robbery in the First Degree

Robbery in the Second Degree (with some exceptions)

Attempt or Conspiracy to Commit Murder

Attempt or Conspiracy to Commit Aggravated Murder

Arson in the First Degree (with some exceptions)

Using a Child in a Display of Sexually Explicit Conduct

Compelling Prostitution

See details on Measure 11 crimes

Who does Measure 11 cover?

Anyone 15 years of age or older. Measure 11 requires that juvenile defendants aged 15 to 17 stand trial in adult court, although, if convicted, they are sent to Oregon Youth Authority facilities where they can remain until age 25.

About 12 percent of people convicted of Measure 11 crimes were under age 18 at the time of the crime.

What are the Core Principles of Measure 11?

Mandatory minimum sentences for violent crimes and serious sex offenses.

Convicted criminals must serve their sentences in full.

Juveniles age 15 to 17 standing trial for Measure 11 crimes must be tried in adult court.

How many criminals are in prison because of Measure 11?

As of January, 2005 5,066 people convicted of Measure 11 crimes were in custody. Of them 149 were held in youth facilities run by the Oregon Youth Authority. The rest are in state prisons.

See Oregon DOC statistics

However, some of these people would be in prison even if Measure 11 never existed. The number of additional prisoners in custody because of Measure 11 is called the "Measure 11 impact".

The October, 2004 Oregon Corrections Population Forecast estimated that about 2,300 of the Measure 11 inmates at that time were in custody because of Measure 11's direct impact.

It estimates that another 1,100 inmates convicted of non-Measure 11 crimes, such as Assault III or Attempted Rape I or II, were in custody because of Measure 11's "indirect impact". The indirect impact is Measure 11's effect on sentences for non-Measure 11 crimes because of changes in charging and plea bargaining practices.

The total of the direct and indirect impacts as of October, 2004 is 3,334 prisoners.

In the 1994 voters' pamphlet the financial impact statement estimated that Measure 11 would require 6,085 additional beds by the year 2000. As of July, 2000, the actual impact was 2,519.

What has happened to Oregon's Prison Population and Incarceration Rate Since Measure 11 Passed?

As of April 1, 1995 Oregon's prison population was 7,290. As of October, 2004 it was 12,778. About half of this increase is due to Measure 11.

From 1995 to 2003 Oregon went from 42nd in the nation in incarceration rate to 30th. If Oregon's incarceration rate had stayed flat during that period our ranking would have moved from 42nd to 47th.

What has happened to the violent crime rate in Oregon since 1995 and how does that relate to Measure 11?

From 1995 through 2002 the violent crime rate in Oregon decreased by 44%. During that same period it decreased nationally by 28%. Oregon had the largest decrease among all states.

Oregon's decrease in violent crime rate translates to 34,000 fewer reported violent crimes over that period.

During 1995-2002 period, Measure 11 accounted for 10,400 prisoner-years worth of incapacitation.

It is a matter of debate how much of the decrease in violent crime rate should be attributed to Measure 11. Crime Victims United does not claim that all of the decrease is due to Measure 11 but we believe had a substantial impact. Measure 11 opponents deny that Measure 11 made any contribution to the decrease in violent crime rate in Oregon.

What is the cost of Measure 11?

To our knowledge, Crime Victims United is the only entity that has estimated Measure 11's cost to taxpayers. We estimate that, in the 2003-2005 biennium, Measure 11 cost Oregon taxpayers $189 million. This is 1.7 percent of Oregon's general fund budget and 0.71 percent of our estimate of Oregon's total spending of taxpayer money.

The cost of Measure 11 works out to about $27 per year for each Oregonian.

What is the current debate over Measure 11?

Measure 11 opponents feel that Measure 11 has had no impact on violent crime, has had a negative impact on the quality of justice in Oregon, and has cost a lot of money which could be better spent for treatment programs and education. They are are lobbying the Oregon Legislature in favor of several bills. Senate Bill 436 would to allow earned time for most Measure 11 prisoners. Senate Bill 437 would to allow early release for prisoners convicted of Measure 11 crimes when they were juveniles. Senate Bill 263 would allow judges to sentence below the current mandatory minimums for all Measure 11 crimes.

Measure 11 proponents feel that Measure 11 has contributed substantially to Oregon's dramatic drop in violent crime rate, has restored credibility to Oregon's criminal justice system, and is well worth the cost. They feel that no major changes are needed and that any further legislative modifications should be along the lines of prior legislation which provided for exceptions in limited circumstances.


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