First person convicted under Oregon’s new bias crime law


Don Kirchoff assaulted two gay men in September

Don Kirchhoff was convicted under Oregon’s new bias crime law on Oct. 18, 2019. (MCSO)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The first conviction under the state’s new bias crime law has been made after Don Kirchhoff pleaded guilty on Friday.

Kirchhoff was arrested on September 1 when he approached and attacked 2 gay men outside a bakery on Northwest 10th Avenue. He reportedly used homophobic and racial terms against the couple before shoving one of them into a brick wall, giving the man a head wound and other abrasions.

Once the two men began to walk away from Kirchhoff, he followed. He gained their attention back by pulling on one of the man’s shirt and then punched him in the face.

Kirchhoff was arrested shortly after.

“A bias crime can have a chilling effect on the community,” said Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney BJ Park. “We hope Mr. Kirchhoff will recognize the amount of harm he caused to the victims and the community.”

The 50-year-old pleaded guilty in court and was sentenced to 3 years probation along with 15 days in jail. He is not allowed to come near the bakery where the assault occurred and he will be required to go through a mental health, drug and alcohol evaluation.

Kirchhoff had been previously arrested for assaulting his long-time girlfriend on June 30.

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