HILLSBORO, Ore.- On March 6, 2019, Washington County Judge D. Charles Bailey sentenced Merlinda M. Avalos to 151 months in prison. Avalos pleaded guilty to six counts of First-Degree Criminal Mistreatment in January of 2019 based on abuse and neglect toward three young family members. Deputy District Attorney Marie Atwood prosecuted the case against Avalos.

Hillsboro Police began investigating Avalos in April of 2018 after one of the children made disclosures of abuse to a school counselor. Detectives and experts from CARES Northwest interviewed the three children—ages 12, 10 and 9 at the time—and found extensive evidence of ongoing abuse.

Avalos had been caring for the children at the time of the incidents. Investigators found she had abused them in a number of ways. She administered physical beatings, used sleep deprivation as a form of punishment, fed them minimal amounts of food and forced them to use jugs to urinate in rather than giving them access to a proper bathroom.

A school counselor fought back tears as she spoke about the abuse in court. She described the children arriving to school in soiled clothing and the efforts school staff made to address the problem.

After detectives first confronted Avalos with the allegations, an officer spotted Avalos and her husband attempting to destroy evidence at their home. That evidence was later gathered by law enforcement, and corroborated the allegations made by the children.

The Washington County District Attorney’s Office would like to acknowledge the Hillsboro Police Department, CARES Northwest and the Oregon Department of Human Services for their work on this case, as well as Hillsboro School District staff who worked diligently to protect the victims and report suspected abuse.

In addition to her prison time, Avalos was ordered to pay more than $20,000 in compensatory fines to the victims, more than $6,000 in restitution and ordered to have no contact with minors other than her own son when she is released. She will also undergo three years of post-prison supervision.

Avalos will be transferred to the Oregon Department of Corrections to begin serving her sentence.

Media contact information
Stephen Mayer
Public Information Officer
971-708-8219

HILLSBORO, Ore.- On March 4, 2019, Judge Andrew Erwin sentenced John Patrick Gilbreath to five years of probation with credit for time served following his conviction for Unlawful Sexual Penetration in the First Degree.

Gilbreath worked at Partridge House daycare in Beaverton. Following his conviction at trial, he faced a mandatory 25-year minimum prison sentence pursuant to Oregon’s “Jessica’s Law” for sexually abusing a three-year-old child at the daycare. However, the court determined that a 25-year prison sentence would be unconstitutional in Gilbreath’s case because there was not sufficient evidence to prove that Gilbreath’s actions were done with a sexual intent. Gilbreath will be required to register as a sex offender and while he is on probation he will undergo sex offender treatment and be forbidden to have contact with minors.

Oregon’s “Jessica’s Law” is the name used to refer to a law that requires minimum sentences for certain sex crimes against young children. Many states across the nation have similar versions of “Jessica’s Law.” This case highlights the challenges of addressing child sex abuse when often the only evidence of the crime is the statements of a very young child victim.

See our press release on Gilbreath's conviction here

Media contact information
Stephen Mayer
Public Information Officer
971-708-8219

HILLSBORO, Ore.- On February 27, 2019, Jeffery Wayne Tiemann was sentenced to 100 months in prison. Tiemann pleaded guilty to First Degree Sex Abuse, Second Degree Sodomy and Encouraging Child Sex Abuse in the Second Degree. The defendant was sentenced by Judge Charles Bailey. The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Allison Brown and investigated by Washington County Sheriff’s Office Detective Jessica Zieman.

The investigation began in February of 2018 after the 13-year-old victim met Tiemann through a social media app. They began communicating and the victim alerted Tiemann that she was underage. The two eventually met in person where Tiemann sexually abused the girl.

Later that day, the victim’s mother found the messages on her phone and called law enforcement. Tiemann admitted to using the app and communicating with the child but denied he knew her true age.

Police seized his phone. Investigators found images and videos of child pornography.

We would like to acknowledge the Washington County Sheriff’s Office for their thorough investigation on this case. Credit also goes to the victim’s mother who took the time to check her daughter’s phone. We encourage all parents to do the same and to be aware of what their children are doing online.

“Crimes against children that occur online are particularly difficult for law enforcement to detect and enforce,” Deputy District Attorney Brown said. “The crimes this defendant committed against this child would not have come to law enforcement’s attention without the diligence of this child’s mother.”

Tiemann will be transferred to the Oregon Department of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.

Media contact information
Stephen Mayer
Public Information Officer
971-708-8219

HILLSBORO, Ore.- On February 28, 2019, Judge Andrew R. Erwin sentenced Andrew Guy Moret to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 30 years. Moret was found guilty in the murder of Alonzo Sentel Gregg on February 15, 2019 by a jury of his peers.

Moret was convicted of Murder and Unlawful Use of a Weapon for the 2015 shooting. Moret will be transferred to the Oregon Department of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.

Our previous press release on this case can be viewed here

Media contact information
Stephen Mayer
Public Information Officer
971-708-8219

HILLSBORO, Ore.- On February 15, 2019, a Washington County jury found Andrew Guy Moret guilty of Murder and Unlawful Use of a Weapon. Judge Andrew R. Erwin oversaw the case. Senior Deputy District Attorney Bracken McKey and Deputy District Attorney Rayney Meisel prosecuted the case against Moret.

On September 13, 2015, Moret shot Alonzo Sentel Gregg nine times near Dandy’s Deli in Hillsboro. Gregg died at the scene. Moret was arrested three days after the shooting and charged with Gregg’s murder.

Moret, who served as his own attorney in the case, claimed self-defense in the shooting of Gregg. The jury disagreed and found him guilty.

The Washington County District Attorney’s Office would like to acknowledge the Hillsboro Police Department and Detective Sean Magnuson for their work on this case which spanned more than three years.

Sentencing is set for February 28 at 8:30. Moret will remain in custody until he is transferred to the Oregon Department of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.

Media contact information
Stephen Mayer
Public Information Officer
971-708-8219

HILLSBORO, Ore.- On February 13, 2019, Judge Beth L. Roberts sentenced 67-year-old Stephen William Breaux to 240 months in prison. Breaux pleaded guilty to four counts of Sexual Abuse in the First Degree on February 1, 2019. The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Allison Brown.

Hillsboro Police first began investigating Breaux in January of 2018 after the 9-year-old victim made a disclosure of abuse to her father. Her father then alerted authorities. The victim was also taken to CARES Northwest, where she told counselors that Breaux had been abusing her for the last two years.

Breaux initially denied the allegations and refused to take a polygraph examination, but eventually admitted his guilt in court. The victim’s family was in court for Breaux’s sentencing, and indicated the victim will be relieved now that this case is concluded.

The Washington County District Attorney’s Office would like to acknowledge the Hillsboro Police Department, Detective Michelle Gay, and CARES Northwest for their assistance in this case.

In addition to his prison sentence, Breaux must register as a sex offender. Breaux has been transferred to the Oregon Department of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.

Media contact information
Stephen Mayer
Public Information Officer
971-708-8219

Pages

Featured Articles

Our prosecutors are dedicated to seeking justice and protecting our community. They all work towards the same goal, but each took a different path to their careers in public service. Our new video...
HILLSBORO, Ore.- On June 14, 2019, a Washington County jury found Jonathan Alexander Tyler guilty of two counts of Second-Degree Rape, two counts of First-Degree Sex Abuse, two counts of First-Degree...
Join us as we introduce you to three more members of our team of dedicated prosecutors. They all come from different backgrounds and each pursued a career in criminal justice for different reasons, but...
Did you know we have a dedicated team of law enforcement professionals, from agencies all across Washington County, tasked with protecting children? The Child Abuse Multidisciplinary Team is made up of...
HILLSBORO, Ore.- On June 7, 2019, Jose Luis Berumen-Carlos was sentenced to 180 months in prison by Judge Ricardo Menchaca for his role in a drive-by shooting, plus an additional 13 months in prison...
HILLSBORO, Ore.- On June 4, 2019, Derek Brandon Conley pleaded guilty to Second-Degree Disorderly Conduct and was sentenced to 28 days in jail and 18 months of bench probation by Judge Rebecca Guptill...
Subscribe to Washington County District Attorney's Office RSS