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Pervocops and the Perv Who Certified ThemPrevious articles in People's Police Reports have noted illegal and inappropriate sexual conduct of various law enforcement personnel both in the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) and in other jurisdictions. These incidents almost always involve male officers and civilian women, many of whom find themselves subject to threats from those who have power over them. Unfortunately, these incidents keep happening and the PPB has no gender parity training, despite Portland Copwatch's repeated calls for making it mandatory.
The incident generating the most publicity (and a large settlement) involved John Minnis, a former PPB officer and, until he was forced to resign, the director of Oregon's Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST). In July, a woman who had filed a claim against Minnis and the DPSST was awarded $450,000 in a settlement with the state. Minnis is responsible for $65,000 and the remaining $385,000 is from the state's risk management account. The woman, an assistant to Minnis, alleged he made repeated and unwanted sexual advances which included getting her intoxicated, although he was aware she suffered from alcoholism. She indicated he frequently touched her, made inappropriate comments, and furnished her with vodka. Minnis resigned in November under pressure from Governor Kulongoski (Oregonian, July 3).
In June, former Beaverton police officer Joshua Jensen was sentenced to 2-1/2 years in prison after admitting solicitation of sex from prostitutes while on duty. The judge further sentenced Jensen to two years of post-prison supervision, counseling and a 12 step program for sexual addiction. Jensen made contact with women through online ads for escort services and used his power as an officer to coerce these women. He did pay one woman $40 but threatened another with arrest for prostitution unless she performed a sex act without pay. Jensen's defense attorney attempted to excuse Jensen's "troubling" actions by indicating he was an ex-marine and had served in Iraq (Oregonian, June 29).
In May, Clackamas County Jail deputy Darin Fox was arrested, accused of sexual activity with female inmates, both in jail and those released to their homes on electronic-monitor release. In one incident, Fox exposed himself to a woman who was working in the jail laundry. He pleaded guilty to two counts of first degree misconduct, a class A misdemeanor. He was sentenced to 20 days in jail, had to surrender his law enforcement certification, and is serving 18 months of bench probation. Another Clackamas jail deputy, Alan Dean Randol, served eight days in jail for similar conduct last fall (Oregonian, May 14 and Oregonlive, June 23).
On April 29, the Portland Mercury reported Portland police were taking money from a city
"evidence fund" to pay for an informant to have sex with an alleged prostitute. When they
were finished, the woman was arrested for prostitution. Attorney Scott Stinson indicated this
procedure was probably illegal and concluded that the officers had, "taken in a certain light,
entered into a conspiracy to commit a crime... the DA's office has basically... sanctioned unlawful
conduct." Spokesperson Mary Wheat stated it had been Bureau policy to use informants in
prostitution cases. DA Mike Schrunk says this about helping women: "Prostitution as you know
exploits women, degrades neighborhoods, degrades people." Perhaps more thought and effort
should go into helping women who are exploited and degraded by those in law enforcement who
wear uniforms, carry a gun, and misuse their power and authority to exploit and degrade.
Portland Shootings on the Rise
Portland Copwatch Portland Copwatch is a grassroots, volunteer organization promoting police accountability
through citizen action.
Portland Copwatch is a grassroots, volunteer organization promoting police accountability through citizen action.