Monthly Archives: October 1999

Oregon Court of Appeals ruling granting access to Portland police disciplinary records

FILED: October 27, 1999 IN THE COURT OF APPEALS OF THE STATE OF OREGON CITY OF PORTLAND, a municipal corporation, Appellant, v. DAVID ANDERSON and THE OREGONIAN, Respondents. (99711-09411; CA A101699) Appeal from Circuit Court, Multnomah County. Ann Fisher, Judge pro tempore. Argued and submitted November 30, 1998. Frank Hudson, Deputy City Attorney, argued the [...]

Chapter 16: Glossary

Legal Glossary ACTION, CASE, SUIT, LAWSUIT: These words mean essentially the same thing. They refer to a legal dispute brought into court for trial. ADVERSARY SYSTEM: The system of justice in the U.S. and some other countries in which court cases are decided on the basis of evidence and arguments presented by each of the [...]

Chapter 15: Oregon’s Shield Law

Oregon’s shield law, ORS 44.510 through ORS 44.540, provides broad protection for reporters and others against compelled testimony, production of evidence and searches. This law protects people connected with, employed by or engaged in a medium of public communication, including print and broadcast media, books, periodicals, pamphlets, wire services or feature syndicates. The protection extends [...]

Chapter 14: Health Care Information: Oregon Code of Cooperation

The Code of Cooperation provides a set of guidelines for cooperation between Oregon healthcare providers and the news media. It is devised cooperatively to facilitate accurate, ethical, and timely news coverage of medical and other health-related events. This code balances the patient’s right to privacy and well-being with the public’s right to receive information. In [...]

Chapter 13: Ethics

In covering an arrest or trial, a reporter may often feel frustrated by what he or she sees as a lack of cooperation from law enforcement officials. In asking questions of officers of the court, the reporter should bear in mind that formal guidelines or professional codes may restrict the amount of information that can [...]

Chapter 12: Defamation

The importance of a free press is enshrined in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which provides that “Congress shall make no law… abridging the freedom of… the press.” The Oregon constitution, however, does not specifically mention a “free press,” but instead provides: No law shall be passed restraining the free expression of [...]

Chapter 11: The Federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), The Federal Privacy Act, Oregon Public Records Law

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 USC 552 (1988), and the Privacy Act, 5 USC 552a, are the two general federal statutes governing access to government data. There are many other specialized statutes (like the Internal Revenue Code at Title 26 USC) which govern specific areas and types of records. The law in this [...]

Chapter 10: Broadcast Media Regulation

Broadcasting in the United States is one medium which still remains subject to substantial forms of content-based regulation, principally by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Justification for this regulation is based on the “public interest” rationale. Essentially that rationale is that there is a quid pro quo between the station operator (“licensee”) and the federal [...]

Chapter 9: Cameras in the Courtroom

In 1999, the Oregon Supreme Court adopted a number of revisions to the state’s Uniform Trial Court Rules that refined the procedures for allowing cameras, both video and still, and audio recording devices to be used by the media in courtrooms. The adoption and revision of Uniform Trial Court Rule 3.180, followed nearly a decade [...]

Chapter 8: Juvenile Court

In Oregon, except in certain very limited circumstances, the juvenile court has exclusive jurisdiction over persons under the age of 18. The Oregon Juvenile Code refers to them as either delinquent “youths” or dependent “children.” Delinquency Jurisdiction: Applies to youths who have committed an act which is a violation, or if done by an adult [...]
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