The Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision has deferred the release of inmate Sidney Dean Porter, convicted of aggravated murder in the 1992 beating death of John Day police officer Frank Ward. Porter's new projected release date is in June 2015. The Oregon Crime Victims Law Center represented Ben Ward, the brother of Frank Ward, at the Parole Board hearing held on September 30, 2013.
According to the Board of Parole, Porter "failed to demonstrate a full understanding of his criminal offense." During the hearing, Porter's version of the events of the evening of April 8, 1992 differed substantially from witness accounts and investigative reports.The Board found that Porter "minimized his actions" in describing the murder of Officer Ward, and that he "understated his history of domestic violence."
"I'm just glad the whole truth came out. The Board heard what really happened that night," said Ben Ward.
Rosemary Brewer, legal director of OCVLC, submitted a memo in opposition to Porter's release on behalf of Ben Ward, who spoke at the hearing. Grant County District Attorney Ryan Joslin also argued against Porter's release.
On October 9, 2013, the Oregon Crime Victims Law Center helped to persuade the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision that an inmate who orchestrated the beating death of a 21-year-old Oregon City man that he should spend at least another 48 months behind bars.
The Board had previously set a release date for Tony Wik of January 24, 2014, but after deliberating unanimously concluded that the inmate had a present severe emotional disturbance that would make him a threat to the safety of the community.
At the hearing, Wik continued to deny that he planned and carried out the murder of Rob Elledge, a man Wik said he considered his "best friend." After questioning Wik for more than two hours, board vice-chair Candace Wheeler told him, "Frankly. you're not credible."
Wik was convicted of felony murder, burglary and hindering prosecution, and given a sentence of life with a minimum of 25 years with five years consecutive for hindering prosecution in 1987 by Clackamas County Circuit Court Judge Raymond Bagley. An Oregon Supreme Court holding in 2010 required the board to set a possible release date for the inmate if it found that he was likely to be rehabilitated, even though he has not yet completed his 30 year minimum sentence.
OCVLC represented Rob Elledge's parents, Mary and Robert, in opposing Wik's release. Also appearing at the hearing were the victim's sisters and brother-in-law. Clackamas County Deputy District Attorney Al French also spoke in opposition to the release. Rosemary Brewer, legal director of OCVLC, argued on behalf of Robert Elledge.