The Criminal Division prosecutes all misdemeanor and gross misdemeanor offenses committed within the Vancouver city limits. The division initiates criminal cases in Clark County District Court, participates in Specialty Courts, and cooperatively runs the Domestic Violence Prosecution Center with other community partners. Criminal Division attorneys serve the community by seeking to hold offenders accountable and secure justice for victims of crime. The role of a criminal prosecutor is unique in the American legal system, carrying special ethical obligations, and requires that attorneys seek justice, not just convictions. The City’s prosecutors recognize that the decision to bring and maintain criminal charges is impactful, and we approach it with the utmost care, temperance, and restraint. We will never advance or maintain a criminal charge on account of any individual’s race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, or creed.
Our Prosecution Division researches and advises law enforcement on fact-specific legal questions and prosecutes misdemeanor and gross misdemeanor criminal cases within the city limits.
After conviction, prosecution attorneys advocate for the City at criminal sentencing hearings, seek restitution for crime victims, and represent the City through any criminal appeals.
The Criminal Prosecution Division staffs Specialty Courts, including Veteran’s Court, Therapeutic Alternative Court, Driving Under the Influence Court, Mental Health Court, and Community Court. Attorneys also run diversion programs for qualifying individuals accused of certain offenses. In some cases, this allows qualifying offenders with limited criminal history an opportunity to avoid the adverse impacts of having a criminal conviction on their record.
Domestic Violence Prosecution Center
Through an interlocal agreement, prosecutors, legal support staff, and law enforcement from both the City of Vancouver and Clark County work cooperatively to operate the Domestic Violence Prosecution Center.
Attorneys assigned to the center prosecute criminal cases involving domestic violence and provide ongoing domestic violence-related advice and training to law enforcement.