PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Terry Bean, the prominent Democratic fundraiser accused of having sex with a minor, will be in a Lane County court Thursday in an effort to settle his case.
Prosecutors say Bean wants to settle his case by paying the alleged victim, and a judge is expected to rule on what is called a “civil compromise.”
Prosecutors are opposed to the deal.
Bean’s attorneys will ask the judge to endorse an out-of-court civil financial settlement between the 66-year-old and the victim, who was 15 at the time.
He and his co-defendant, Kiah Lawson, each face sex abuse charges – 2 felonies and one misdemeanor.
Some who are opposed to this settlement say Bean’s clout and means will help him avoid prosecution.
“We expect equal justice in the US. The law should apply to all equally,” radio host Lars Larson said Wednesday. “This says it applies to all equally unless you have a fat wallet, in which case it doesn’t really apply to you. But it applies to your co-defendant, who doesn’t have a fat wallet.”
Lewis & Clark law professor Tung Yin said, “The dirty secret is that in the criminal justice system, wealth makes a big difference, even apart from these offers of compromise.”
Settlements are often smiled on by prosecutors because they save the system time, money and resources.
But not this one.
“This case the DA is saying, ‘Hold on, this is a bad idea. I do not support this,'” Yin said. “That makes it a little bit unusual.”
Prosecutors filed this objection to a civil settlement Tuesday, arguing Bean needs to be held accountable in a court of law.
Deputy District Attorney Scott Healy said, “(Bean) should not be able to purchase an escape from the consequences of his own serious criminal misconduct.” He added Bean is a continuing threat to young, vulnerable victims he has been abusing for decades.
KOIN 6 News will continue to follow this story.