2015 ORS 164.035¹
Defenses to theft

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This section is amended
Effective January 1, 2017
Relating to notario fraud; creating new provisions; and amending ORS 131.125, 131.602, 162.235, 164.015, 164.025, 164.035, 164.075, 194.315, 194.340 and 701.098.

(1) In a prosecution for theft it is a defense that the defendant acted under an honest claim of right, in that:

(a) The defendant was unaware that the property was that of another; or

(b) The defendant reasonably believed that the defendant was entitled to the property involved or had a right to acquire or dispose of it as the defendant did.

(2) In a prosecution for theft by extortion committed by instilling in the victim a fear that the victim or another person would be charged with a crime, it is a defense that the defendant reasonably believed the threatened charge to be true and that the sole purpose of the defendant was to compel or induce the victim to take reasonable action to make good the wrong which was the subject of the threatened charge.

(3) In a prosecution for theft by receiving, it is a defense that the defendant received, retained, concealed or disposed of the property with the intent of restoring it to the owner.

(4) It is a defense that the property involved was that of the defendant’s spouse, unless the parties were not living together as spouses in a marriage and were living in separate abodes at the time of the alleged theft. [1971 c.743 §132; 2001 c.104 §53; 2015 c.629 §31]

Notes of Decisions

A creditor's intent to collect a debt from his debtor by force is not a de­fense to a charge of robbery. State v. Martin, 15 Or App 498, 516 P2d 753 (1973), Sup Ct review denied

Although defendant returned car to lienholder, towing company in lawful pos­ses­sion of car had right to pos­ses­sion superior to that of defendant and was "owner" for purpose of af­firm­a­tive de­fense to theft by receiving. State v. Jost/Oregon-Washington Recovery Co., Inc., 122 Or App 531, 858 P2d 881 (1993)

Law Review Cita­tions

51 OLR 432, 525-536 (1972); 10 WLJ 156 (1974)

Chapter 164

Law Review Cita­tions

51 OLR 427-637 (1972)


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 164—Offenses Against Property, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors164.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2015, Chapter 164, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano164.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.