September 17 2021
Elisabeth Shepard, Communications Director
DA Mike Schmidt announces 20-year sentence for Mathew Campbell, 58, for child abuse
PORTLAND, Ore. – On Wednesday, September 15, 2021, Judge Christopher Marshall sentenced 58 year-old Mathew Campbell to 20 years in prison as a result of his guilty and no contest pleas to one count of Unlawful Sexual Penetration in the First Degree, two counts of Sexual Abuse in the First Degree, and two counts of Attempted Sexual Abuse in the First Degree. Campbell entered pleas on Friday September 10, 2021. Trial was scheduled to commence on Monday September 13, 2021.
In March of 2019, the victim’s mother reported the abuse to the Portland Police Bureau. The victim, 13, had disclosed the abuse two days prior. The abuse occurred when the victim was between the ages of 6 and 7 years old, occurring one to two times per week. Mr. Campbell was known to the victim. The victim’s older sister also disclosed sexual abuse by Mr. Campbell during subsequent interviews with investigators.
The victims and family members were present at sentencing. A therapy dog was also present in the courtroom at the time of sentencing, giving the victims much needed support. The victims shared victim impact statements with the court, describing the long term and incessant impact these crimes had and continue to have on their lives. “I have nightmares where I don’t have a voice. I try to scream and nothing comes out,” described one of the victims. At age 13, she decided to report the abuse after watching YouTube videos of other survivors sharing their stories of childhood sexual abuse. “I found strength listening to survivors talk about their experiences and hearing how things got better for them after they spoke out.”
The victims’ mother also gave a victim impact statement, describing the pain that continues to reverberate through their family. “Is there anything worse for a parent than to see your children suffer and not be able to help?” the mother asked the court. She affectionately referred to her youngest daughter as, “Joy Peppercorn,” because the child’s radiant smile and energy emanate joy. But the child is also like a peppercorn – small but mighty, and if you dare to bite her, she will bite you back with a potent and powerful strength.
Veteran child abuse prosecutor Amber Kinney handled the case, which was primarily investigated by Gresham Police Detective Aaron Dressler along with members of the Multnomah County Child Abuse Team.
It was through the coordination, communication and collaboration of the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office Multidisciplinary Child Abuse Team that this case was investigated and prosecuted. The Multidisciplinary Child Abuse Team includes representatives from CARES Northwest, local law enforcement, public schools, hospitals, health departments, local mental health service providers, the Oregon Department of Human Services, and Multnomah County’s Department of Community Justice.
The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Multidisciplinary Child Abuse Team works with community partners to protect children who have been abused and neglected while striving to ensure that all practices are trauma-informed and mitigate the life-long consequences of child abuse. CARES Northwest, Multnomah County’s child abuse assessment center, is a community-based medical program for the assessment, treatment and prevention of child abuse.