Oregon Convict Challenges 'Unconstitutional' Obstacle to Legal Malpractice Claims

Published: Oct. 22, 2021 at 11:07 AM EDT

MEDFORD, Ore., Oct. 22, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- On October 25, 2021, attorney Larry R. Roloff will challenge a thirty-year-old Oregon supreme court case, Stevens v. Bispham, that has effectively been used to bar all legal malpractice lawsuits filed by convicted defendants against their defense attorneys. Roloff's challenge is being made in a legal malpractice action (Case 21CV26445) brought by Oregon writer Tucker Reed against her former court-appointed lawyer Anthony Griffin. Griffin has asserted in a Motion for Summary Judgment that under Stevens, a convicted defendant cannot pursue a legal malpractice action because she cannot prove any measurable injury from her lawyer's errors unless she has been subsequently exonerated of the criminal offense.

Roloff is urging the court to recognize that Stevens was never intended to be a total bar to malpractice lawsuits by convicted defendants, and that Steven's use as a such a bar violates the constitutional rights of Oregon inmates under Article I, Section 10. Roloff's arguments also include new information (including declarations from witnesses and from Reed herself) pertaining to Reed's sensationalized murder case. Reed, who fought for four years to bring her case to trial and have her self-defense evidence heard by a jury, says she finally accepted a plea deal for second degree manslaughter to escape the trauma and civil rights abuses she suffered daily during the 20 months she spent in pre-trial detention in the Jackson County Jail.

Statement from Tucker Reed:
I struggled for 19 months to get Mr. Griffin to cooperate with me to build my defense in a self-defense case. My emails went unread, my phone calls un-returned, all while witnesses went un-interviewed and recollections and forensic evidence degraded. It is my hope that Mr. Roloff's efforts in this matter will pave the way for other defendants to pursue justice in Oregon's civil courts. As it has been manipulated, the Stevens ruling has enabled casual attorney malpractice in Oregon, and I personally feel Mr. Griffin deliberately sabotaged my case before abandoning me to even more incompetent counsel. Stevens has been abused by lawyers desperate to shrug off their mistakes—mistakes that ruin lives.
(Contact for this Press Release: 541.821.5472)


Larry R. Roloff
Attorney at Law
132 East Broadway, Suite 233, Eugene, OR 97401
Phone- 541-686-8695 / Fax- 541-686-8751

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SOURCE Law Offices of Larry Roloff

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