Gresham, Oregon — just three days after going on probation, Jamie Leann Oliver, aged 35, violated said probation, and as a result, has to serve a three-year-and-four-month sentence in prison. The woman was charged with leaving her two children unattended for hours at a Gresham MAX station. Oliver left them to go drinking on her own.
Last month, the mother of two was given a sentence of five years on probation for the negligence of her children. Namely, she left her 12-year-old daughter and a 3-month-old son alone at a train station on the 188th Avenue in the Rockwood neighborhood. It was a rainy December afternoon.
A stranger found the children alone, with the older daughter being without a jacket and soaking wet from the rain. She was crying and holding her baby brother. The stranger waited for Oliver’s return, but some time after, they decided to call the police as the mother was seemingly not coming back. Officers responding to the call picked up the kids.
Oliver called 911 six hours after she had left her children. During the call, she conceded being unable to find the children and admitted to drinking a whole bottle of wine because she had doubts her boyfriend was cheating on her. After the wine bottle, she maintained to have lost consciousness right outside a tavern. That tavern was seven blocks away from the station where her children were located.
During the five-year probation, Oliver was ordered, among other things, to cease any contact with the boyfriend. The two of them had a rambunctious relationship and a record of asking for restraining orders on both sides. The judge explicitly told Oliver she would go to prison if she made any contact with her boyfriend.
Violating the Probation
Despite the warnings, Oliver didn’t take the situation seriously. Just three days following the announcement of the sentence, Oliver’s probation officer found that the 35-year-old had a text message exchange with the boyfriend. When confronted about it, she decided to lie, and therefore, earned herself a ticket to jail. On Tuesday, a hearing took place, attended by Karin Immergut, Multnomah County Circuit Judge. During the process of the hearing, Oliver admitted to communicating with her boyfriend and later lying about it.
Amanda Nadell, Deputy District Attorney, told the media that she accepted the initial decision to put Oliver on probation. Seemingly, Oliver welcomed sobriety and was open to receiving treatment for alcoholism. According to Nadell, the District Attorney’s Office was happy with giving Oliver another chance at proper behavior, as the mother fought to regain custody of her children. At the time, they were at the Oregon Department of Human Services.
Nonetheless, when Nadell found out about Oliver’s texting, and thus, the violation of probation, the Attorney recommended a prison sentence, claiming that Oliver used up her last chance in vain.
Furthermore, this wasn’t Oliver’s first run-in with the law. Namely, in 2016, she had a hearing before the same judge. Then, Immergut issued a 60-days jail and probation sentence. Oliver, together with two accomplices, was found guilty of assaulting a stranger on a MAX train. They kicked the stranger until they were completely covered in blood and assumed possession of their backpack. What’s more, Oliver violated that probation as well, after they found her drinking alcohol. Judge Immergut allowed her to go on treatment during probation, as opposed to sending her to jail. During the pronouncement of sentence, Immergut informed Oliver this was her “last chance.”
After the violation of that probation, in June of the same year, Judge David Rees gave her another probation for first-degree criminal mistreatment. Nadell viewed the sentence as a gift to Oliver. After the MAX beating and leaving her children at the station, according to Nadell, Oliver had too many opportunities to be in line with the rules of probation. Now, there are no more helping hands for her. As a result, Oliver will now spend three and a third years in prison, with no access to her children.
Nadell went on to say that, although Oliver’s love for her children was evident, the mother repeatedly showed that her priority in life was her boyfriend. Valerie Feltz, Defense Attorney, claimed that Oliver’s boyfriend’s hold on the woman was too great for her to resist. She claimed Oliver was a victim of domestic violence and would need counseling and time to take a step away from the whole ordeal. Consequently, that is the reason why Feltz still believes probation is the best course of action. According to Feltz, sending her to prison fails to address the issue she has, which could be solved by counseling.
No More Chances
While speaking in front of the judge, Oliver implored Judge Immergut not to lose hope and allow her to grow as a mother and a strong individual. However, Immergut told her that her probation officer offered enough support for her to leave what held her back behind. Nonetheless, she failed to comply with court orders and exposed her children to a dangerous situation.
The judge told Oliver there was a good chance the children could have been sexually assaulted or even killed while she was drinking to get over her boyfriend. Moreover, according to Immergut, putting the children at such risk over her love affairs is a clear indication that she wasn’t ready for another probation. After all, she received a warning that jail was waiting if she violated her probation — Oliver’s jail sentence is a consequence of her own actions.