Oregon’s district attorneys have long been at odds with left-leaning lawmakers and criminal justice reform advocates in Salem. But nothing has inflamed hostilities like a recent newspaper op-ed by a former DA who compared property theft to sexual harassment and assault.
Recently retired Clatsop County DA Joshua Marquis wrote an op-ed for the Portland Tribune last month that compared property crimes to the sexual harassment endured by women in the state Capitol—because both are “inappropriate touching.”
Records newly obtained by WW show Marquis’ op-ed set off a flurry of emails between members of the Oregon District Attorneys Association. Despite several district attorneys privately condemning the piece, the ODAA refused to disavow Marquis’ op-ed. Other DAs defended Marquis, saying he should be allowed to say what he believes as a private citizen now that he’s retired, and blamed tensions in Salem for turning the backlash into a “with-us-or-against-us moment.” (Marquis, for his part, tells WW, “It’s a sad state of affairs when any criticism of legislators is met by ‘burn the witch.'”)Read More (Offsite)