In a stunning and exceptionally rare 63 page "advisory" opinion issued yesterday, United States District Court Judge Ancer L. Haggerty excoriated both the United States Attorney for the District of Oregon and its prosecution team, in particular the Oregon State Police and OSP Detective David Steele, for their grossly incompetent and even criminal mishandling of the death penalty murder prosecutions of Holly Grigsby and David Pedersen.
Compared with state-level crimes, some federal crimes come with significantly tougher penalties on conviction. Any defendant, whether from Oregon or some other state, will spend more time in prison and pay more in fines.
Recently, a 29-year-old woman was arrested on federal drug offenses after she excreted an estimated one pound of cocaine in Portland, Oregon. According to Portland police, the woman was found unconscious inside a bathroom at a Portland airport. The woman was sent to the hospital where she began excreting cocaine wrapped in condoms.
Eight people in Portland were recently arrested for their alleged involvement in a prostitution ring that operated across several states as far north as Alaska, as far east as Minnesota and as far west as Hawaii.
Federal crimes like drug offenses, child pornography, white collar crimes and weapon offenses, are prosecuted in federal court, where there is little room for negotiation. Being charged with a federal crime, compared to a state or local crime, can mean stiffer fines and penalties for the accused, if convicted of the charges.
In Oregon, selling, manufacturing or distributing illegal drugs all carry serious penalties. Anyone affected by drug charges knows first-hand how difficult it is to go through federal prosecution.
"There is an epidemic of Brady violations abroad in the land. Only judges can put a stop to it."
Authorities recently arrested two men who are alleged to have been involved in a chain of bank robberies in the Portland metropolitan area. The alleged suspects were captured when they tried to rob a bank inside a grocery store, unaware that detectives were already inside.
A bank robber who spent nearly a year as a fugitive after escaping from a Medford, Oregon, jail was recently captured in Oregon City near Portland by deputies from the U.S. Marshal's Fugitive Task Force.