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Jenkins v. Parole and Post-Prison Supervision

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 09-05-2013
Case #: A144545
Nakamoto, J. for the Court; and Armstrong, P.J.; Haselton, C.J. dissenting.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A144545.pdf

Parole and Post-Prison Supervision: ORS 144.335(3) requires a parole board to provide an inmate with some explanation of the rationale for concluding that the inmate's parole date should be postponed.

Jenkins appealed the Parole Board's (Board) decision to postpone his release by 24 months pursuant to ORS 144.125(3)(a). Jenkins contended that the order postponing his parole was insufficient because the order failed to explain its reasoning.  Jenkins argued that the failure to explain violates ORS 144.135, which requires the bases of decision be stated in writing. Jenkins further argued, citing Castro, that ORS 144.135 requires "some kind of an explanation connecting the facts of the case and the result." The Board responded that Castro was not controlling because the Court had not considered the 1999 revision to ORS 144.135. The Board also argued that the 1999 revision rendered the Board exempt from providing substantial reasons for its decisions. The Court agreed with Jenkins, holding that ORS 144.335(3) "requires a board to provide an inmate with some explanation of the rationale for concluding that the inmate's parole date should be postponed."  Reversed and remanded.  Armstrong, P.J., dissented, and held that the legislature intended to exempt the Board from the requirement to explain its decisions with substantial reason.