I feel compelled to write you, as I don’t know who else to turn to, in hopes you can help with a problem that has literally torn our family apart.

On May 31, 1998 my ex-daughter-in-law, Jayne, who is mentally ill, had my son, Roger, falsely arrested for assault in Bandon, Oregon and he was taken to the County jail. Actually it was her sister, who lives in a different town, who called the police saying Roger was holding Jayne at gunpoint, which was later admitted to be fabricated lie by Jayne. My son was arrested because of her phone call to the police, there were no witnesses. We know Roger is a good person and would never have laid a hand on his wife. His ex-wife, Jayne, called my daughter and I the next morning saying she didn’t know exactly what happened and told us it was a neighbor who called the police, she did not mention the truth, that it was her sister. She then went to the courthouse and bailed my son, Roger, out and then tried to say nothing happened. But at this point the county courts had taken over the case because of the initial abuse charges and it was out of her control. In an interview with a private investigator, Jack Bentley.

After spending over $20,000 for attorneys (including Ken Morrow of Eugene, Fred Carlton of Bandon, William Dials of Charleston, David Dorsey of Coos Bay and his ex-wife’s attorney, Joan Johansen of Coos Bay) he was finally cleared, and not being able to go back into this relationship, after what she had done, he filed for divorce last year. They went to Court and their divorce was granted. THERE ARE NO CHILDREN. He was ordered to pay her $1000 a month for four years, the reason for this was that she was supposed to go back to school to get her G.E.D. She has never enrolled for any classes. Roger has paid $300 a month car payment, and her attorney fees of $1500 as ordered by the Judge, Paula Bechtold. Her attorney was Joan Johansen of Coos Bay. There is no way he can afford to pay Jayne $1000 a month. He has since married to his high school girlfriend, moved to Colorado, and is finally happy.

He is staring a new job in a different profession on March 1st, About two weeks ago he received a Summons from the Coos County Court to appear here on March 13th for a hearing and he is being charged $500 a day for contempt of court which seems horribly unfair as apparently this is punishment for his inability to make the unreasonable $1000 a month alimony. His ex-wife’s attorney is Nick Nylander, who asked Roger why he didn’t get the money from me and pay Jayne off but I just don’t have that kind of money, even if I did I don’t feel that I’m responsible to make the payments. I feel that Mr. Nylander’s remark to my son was inappropriate. I understand he is representing Jayne for free which is a surprise to us. After working as a waitress here at six different restaurants, stealing money and writing bad checks, Jayne has now left the area and is in Montana working at a B&B; in St. Ignatius.

We understand through her attorney that she does not want to come back for the court appearance and he has offered to represent her in her absence. She has been trying to get a hold of Roger, although there is a no contact order, and has phoned my house repeatedly and actually left three messages on the answering machine giving her phone number. This is only a small sample of the harassment our family has endured over the divorce. We recorded these messages and gave them to the police. Officer Osborne of the Coos Bay Police Department was going to turn them over to the DA’s office as she was previously told not to call here.

Roger hired, John Springer, an attorney in Bend to defend him. He was supposed to be an old friend but charged a $1500 retainer fee which I paid as Roger has no more money. I have paid over $8500 for attorney fees for him so far and cannot pay any more. I am a widow, living on social security and a small retirement and simply cannot afford to pay any more. He feels if he comes back here for the court hearing, and can’t pay, they will put him in jail.

Our family feels this whole thing has been justly unfair and has been a setup from the beginning in an attempt to extort money from me as my son does not make that kind of money. Judge Paula Bechtold & Joan Johansen are old high school friends and are seen often drinking together at a local bar, Wanda’s, along with several other attorneys. Jayne worked there for a short time and has apparently conned them into feeling sorry for her, I can confindently state that they do not know the real truth. I also think that there is something wrong with our judicial system here in Coos County.

I feel that Paula Bechtold is an unfit Judge to demand such an unreasonable alimony payment when there are no children and Roger is struggling to get by. If he does have to come back here, the family feels it should be before another Judge. I really don’t see why this whole thing can’t be resolved through a fair mutual agreement by mail and he should not be expected to come back to Coos County where he will likely become a victim.

At this point, I feel this situation needs some attention from a higher court. It has caused me much duress over the past two years and has most likely contributed to the death of my husband a year ago last November. Any advice you can give us in this matter will be greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Dorothy Irvin