About FlashAlert on Twitter:
FlashAlert utilizes the free service Twitter to distribute emergency text messages. While you are welcome to register your cell phone text message address directly into the FlashAlert system, we recommend that you simply "follow" the FlashAlert account for Douglas Co. Sheriff's Office by clicking on the link below and logging in to (or creating) your free Twitter account. Twitter sends messages out exceptionally fast thanks to arrangements they have made with the cell phone companies.
On Thursday, March 23, 2017, around 2:30 p.m., a deputy in the Reedsport area overheard Oregon State Police looking for a stolen silver Volvo from the Lane County area. A short time later, the deputy spotted the vehicle on Lower Smith River Road near mile marker 7.
The deputy confirmed the vehicle was stolen and attempted to make a traffic stop, however the driver failed to yeild. The deputy pursued the vehicle at varying speeds averaging 45-55 miles per hour.
The driver of the stolen vehicle eventually stopped when she encountered downed trees on a gravel road and was unable to go any further. The deputy was able to take the suspect, 48 year old Bobbie Pruett a transient from the Florence area, into custody without incident.
Pruett was lodged at the Douglas County Jail on charges of Unauthorized use of a Motor Vehicle and Attempting to Elude Police in a Vehicle.
The Douglas County Sheriff's Office was assisted by Lane County Sheriff's Office and Reedsport Police Department.
On March 21st, 2017, at about 9:00 p.m., Sherman Lee Plale, age 42 of Myrtle Creek, was arrested on Corvallis Avenue, west of the Douglas County Fairgrounds, after a Roseburg Police K-9 unit tracked him down during a manhunt involving several law enforcement agencies from Douglas County.
Plale's crime spree began earlier in the evening when he walked into Lincare, located at 1810 Mulholland Drive, at about 6:30 p.m. Plale displayed a knife and demanded money from one of the employees. Plale fled the business in a blue Ford Explorer after taking the employee's wallet.
Plale then drove to 605 Amanda Street and broke into an unoccupied residence. Plale ransacked the house and stole a cordless drill. The Lincare employee's wallet was later found at this location. From there, Plale then forced his way into the residence at 561 Amanda Street where he pointed the cordless drill at the residents (male age 68, female age 66) and demanded the keys to the couple's 2006 Kia Sorento.
Plale fled in the stolen Sorento and drove to 493 Corvallis Avenue where he confronted a 49 year old female resident in her garage. Plale pointed a gun at the female, forced her inside the residence and demanded keys to a car that was parked out front. The victim gave Plale the car keys and then Plale left. He ended up fleeing in the original stolen Sorento which was found crashed into a tree in the 200 block of Corvallis Avenue.
Plale was lodged in the Douglas County Jail on multiple charges including; First Degree Robbery, First Degree Kidnapping, First Degree Burglary, First Degree Theft, First Degree Criminal Mischief, Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle, Menacing and Unlawful Use of a Weapon.
The Sheriff's Office was assisted by the Roseburg Police Department, Winston Police Department, Sutherlin Police Department and the Oregon State Police.
The Sheriff's Office Division of 9-1-1 Emergency Communications has become aware of a prank which has been spreading throughout the country in recent days.
iPhone users are well aware of Siri, the virtual assistant that can dial numbers for you, look up restaurants in the area, send text messages and perform other similar tasks. It can be a great tool, however if you see a social media post or someone tells you to ask Siri about the number "108" and wait a period of time before doing anything else, don't do it! When you do, your phone believes you need emergency services and you will be connected with the 9-1-1 emergency communications center nearest you. These prank calls tie up 9-1-1 lines and waste the time of emergency services. Oregon Law strictly prohibits misuse of the 9-1-1 system and can result in criminal charges.
The iPhone is able to recognize the emergency number 9-1-1 and take action. But it has also been programmed to recognize the equivalent of 9-1-1 from other countries, such as 108. 108 is an emergency response number in India. Other numbers to avoid are 112, 110, 999 and 000. The 9-1-1 Communications Division tested these numbers and can confirm that dialing or asking Siri about any of these numbers will result in a call being placed to the emergency communications center.
The prank, which has ¬been become popular on social media, is a very serious and potentially criminal act. Even if you believe you have terminated the call in time, your prank call may still ring into the 9-1-1 center.
We encourage everyone to share this information with your friends and family. Help us spread the word and make our community safe by ensuring those who need the life or death assistance of police, fire or EMS have access to them quickly when they call for help.
On Saturday, March 18, 2017 a deputy observed a 1995 Acura Integra being operated by 34 year old Terry Thomas of Roseburg. The vehicle had previously been reported as stolen. The deputy attempted to stop Thomas, who attempted to elude in the vehicle before crashing on Gazley Road near Lou Gray Drive in Cayonville.
Thomas and his 24 year old passenger, Whitney Atterbury of Roseburg, exited the vehicle and began running from deputies. Atterbury was captured after a brief foot chase. Thomas jumped into the South Umpqua River and floated down river.
After approximately 45 minutes in the water, Thomas, who was unconscious, was rescued from the water by deputies. He was transported to Mercy Medical Center where he received treatment and was ultimately discharged into the custody of law enforcement.
Both Thomas and Atterbury were lodged at the Douglas County Jail on the following charges:
Thomas - Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, Fail to Perform the Duties of a Driver - Misdemeanor, Obstructing Governmental Administration, Interfering with a Police Officer, Resisting Arrest, Attempt to Elude on Foot, Attempt to Elude in Vehicle, Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle, and Parole Violation.
Atterbury - Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine, Obstructing Governmental Administration, Interfering with a Police Officer, Resisting Arrest, Escape 2nd Degree, Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle, and Parole Violation.
In two separate events, deputies arrested three burglars over the last two days.
On Sunday, March 19, 2017, at approximately 7:00 pm, a deputy was dispatched to a report of a burglary in progress in the 600-block of E. Third Avenue in Riddle. When the deputy arrived, he observed the suspect in a camper on the property. The suspect refused the deputy's orders to surrender and began running. The deputy captured the suspect, 25 year old William McGarvey of Myrtle Creek.
McGarvey was lodged at the Douglas County Jail for Burglary II, Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine, Escape, Probation Violations and Warrants.
At approximately 2:50 am, a deputy conducting patrol observed a suspicious vehicle parked at the back corner of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Canyonville. The deputy checked on the vehicle and noticed property outside of the vehicle, which was unoccupied.
Deputies entered the building and found two female suspects inside. 35 year old Amy S Meyer of Canyonville and 32 year old Sara R Raatz (aka Sara Spangler) of Riddle were taken into custody without incident. Both Raatz and Meyer were found to be in possession of methamphetamine.
Meyer was lodged for Burglary II, Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine and Theft III.
Raatz was lodged on charges of Burglary II and Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine.
The Sheriff's Office has been notified by InfoStructure of scheduled emergency network maintenance. This maintenance could prevent InfoStructure customers from dialing 9-1-1 during the scheduled time frame. The Sheriff's Office would like to encourage residents and businesses who are InfoStructure customers to prepare ahead of time by finding alternative communication sources which will allow you to reach emergency services if needed.
Any questions regarding this outage should be referred to InfoStructure.
Please read the information below from InfoStructure:
Emergency Network Maintenance Notification:
March 17th 11:59PM to March 18th 6:00AM PST.
InfoStructure would like to inform you in advance of network maintenance that may affect your voice services.
On Friday, March 17th network maintenance will be performed. You may experience intermittent service interruption that may last up to 6 hours.
Date & Time of Work: 3/17/2017 11:59PM to 3/18/2017 6:00AM
Location of Work: Roseburg, Oregon
Scope of Work: Network Maintenance
Customers experiencing connectivity issues outside of the scheduled maintenance window please contact InfoStructure technical support at 800.419.4804 opt 3.
On Saturday, March 11, 2017, around 8pm, a deputy observed a 2000 Honda Civic driving south on Highway 101 near Reedsport. The deputy learned the vehicle was stolen and initiated a traffic stop.
The driver and a passenger were taken into custody.
The driver was identified as William E. Bosley, age 35 of Myrtle Creek. Bosley was taken into custody and charged with Unlawful Use of a Motor Vehicle, Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, Theft 2nd Degree and two arrest warrants.
The passenger, Benjamin A. Malone, age 30 of Roseburg, was taken into custody for Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine.
While following up on a rash of recent vehicle thefts, deputies from the Douglas County Sheriff's Office developed probable cause to search a residence in the 400-block of Harmony Drive in Roseburg. Deputies obtained a search warrant and served that warrant on Sunday, March 12, 2017.
Deputies located evidence of the vehicle theft at the property. Deputies also took several people into custody that were found at the residence.
Justice Colleen Austin, 26 of Roseburg, was arrested on an outstanding arrest warrant and for Unlawful Possession of Heroin.
Lora Maree Griffin, 40 of Roseburg, was arrested for Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine
Jeffery Josiah Burt, 38 of Roseburg, was arrested for Unlawful Possession of Heroin
Bud Lee Levin, 30 of Roseburg, was arrested on an outstanding arrest warrant.
All of the individuals were transported to the Douglas county Jail where they were lodged.
On Monday, March 13, 2017 at approximately 7:08pm, Douglas County Emergency Communications received a 9-1-1 call from an individual reporting a single vehicle crash into a tree in the 3000-block of Hayhurst Road in Yoncalla.
The Sheriff's Office along with North Douglas Fire and EMS were dispatched to the scene. It was determined that the single occupant, 71 year old Alice Crawford of Yoncalla, was deceased upon arrival.
Crawford was wearing her safety belt at the time of the crash. Indications are that alcohol was a contributing factor. The crash is still under investigation by the Douglas County Medical Examiner's Office.
Next of kin has been notified.
The 911 service have been restored. Impacted residents should now be able to dial 911 from their landline telephone.
The Sheriff's Office has been notified of a telephone service outage which is disrupting 9-1-1 availability for some residents in the Roseburg area. Customers of InfoStructure, formally Rio Communications, are believed to be impacted. At this time, InfoStructure can not advise the cause of the problem and has no estimated time of repair.
If residents need to reach emergency services, they may do so by calling 9-1-1 from a cellphone if they have cell phone service.
Updates will be distributed when we have more information.
***FINAL UPDATE - 03/08/17 9:00AM***
Last night Peggy Snyder was extracted from the vehicle and brought to safety by a United States Forest Service crew. Assistance from the Josephine County Search and Rescue Sno-Cat team was requested and arrived. However, the Forest Service Crew had been able to make progress to rescue Peggy.
The couple had gone for a Sunday drive. They had not left plans or information about their route with anyone, even when asked. They drove to Burger King in Canyonville then made their way to South Umpqua Falls to take photos. After taking the photographs, they decided to continue over the mountain with the intention of coming out in the Copeland Creek area. As they continued on, they became stuck in a deep snow drift in their 1997 Subaru Legacy. Unable to free the vehicle, the couple spent the next two nights in their vehicle. They had their cell phone, but were not in a service area and unable to call for assistance. The couple was unprepared for their outing. They did not have their required medications, food or weather appropriate clothing. They ate dog food which was in their vehicle. They kept warm with the vehicle heater, while conserving their gasoline.
Yesterday at 9:00 am, Clyde Snyder made the decision to walk away from the vehicle to seek assistance. Peggy remained with the vehicle. He walked approximately 10-11 miles on foot before happening on a Forest Service Road Crew that was working in the area. The Forest Service Crew was able to make their way within 1/2 mile of the abandoned vehicle. They spoke with Peggy Snyder, who was unable to walk away from the vehicle. They left her with the vehicle and told her help would be back. They took Craig to safety and summoned help from the Sheriff's Office.
The Forest Service employees returned to the area with a side-by-side ATV while help was enroute. They were eventually able to extract her from the area just as Josephine County's Sno-Cat team arrived.
"People have died from this very situation. These individuals are extremely lucky to be alive," said Douglas County Emergency Manager Wayne Stinson.
The Sheriff's Office urges people to recreate safely. Your safety is our concern, but it is your responsibility. You are responsible for yourself, so be prepared. Here are some ways that you can be better prepared in the event something goes awry.
* Be prepared with knowledge and gear. Become self-reliant by learning about the terrain, conditions, local weather and your equipment before you set out.
* Share your plans. Tell someone where you are going, where you plan to hike or recreate, when you will return and your plan for emergencies. Leave a map, if possible.
* Know when to turn back. Weather changes come quickly in the mountains. Fatigue and unexpected conditions can also affect your adventure. Know your limitations and when to postpone the trip. The outdoors will be there another day.
* Plan for emergencies. Whether you are out for an hour or a multi-day trip, an injury, severe weather or wrong turn could become life threatening. Don't assume you will be rescued; know how to rescue yourself. Always carry equipment in case you have to spend the night. Have food, water, shelter and weather appropriate clothing. Carry a first aid kit.
* Communication devices. A cell phone alone does not suffice as an emergency plan. A large portion of our remote areas do not have cell phone coverage. Whichever communication device you decide to carry, make sure you have sufficient power. An alternate power supply is a good idea. If you choose to recreate alone, personal locator beacons are a valuable tool and provide rescuers a better opportunity to find you.
***UPDATE #3 - 03/07/17 6:00pm***
Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue crews are still on scene. We have learned the United States Forest Service made contact with both Clyde and Peggy Snyder this afternoon. Both are reported to be in good condition. Clyde has been extracted from the area, but due to weather conditions Peggy remains with their vehicle which is stuck in the snow. She is reported to be safe, warm and knows help is on its way. A Sno-Cat team from Josephine County is enroute to assist Douglas County with the extraction.
No further information will be released tonight.
***END UPDATE #3***
***UPDATE #2 - 03/07/17 3:00pm***
At 2:45pm today, a United States Forest Service employee found Clyde and Peggy Snyder approximately 31 miles up the snow covered South Umpqua Road near Tiller. Neither subject subject required medical attention and appear to be in good health. Crews are still on scene working to extract the couple to safety.
Additional information will be released at a later time.
***END UPDATE #2***
***UPDATE #1 - 03/07/17 11:45 AM***
The Sheriff's Office continues to work with the family of the Snyders, as well as following up on information provided by the public. As a result of a tip from the public, Deputies were able to confirm that the Snyders were last known to be at Burger King in Canyonville at 11:28 am on Sunday afternoon. Two witnesses have indicated the couple mentioned driving to the Milo area.
Douglas County encompasses over 5,000 square miles, the majority of which is rural wooded area. Although efforts are being made to locate the couple, the lack of information as to the Snyder's destination or route of travel has hampered the mission. Sheriff's Deputies and Search & Rescue personnel have searched some areas already based on tips from the public.
Both Clyde and Peggy Snyder have been entered into the national law enforcement database as missing persons. Efforts to locate them using their cell phone signal have been unsuccessful. If anyone believes they have information as to the whereabouts of the Snyders they are asked to call the Sheriff's Office at 541-440-4471.
**END UPDATE #1***
On Monday, March 6, 2017, at 6:30 am, the Douglas County Sheriff's Office received a call from the family of Clyde and Peggy Snyder reporting them as missing.
The Myrtle Creek couple left their home around 11:00 am yesterday (Sunday, March 5, 2017) for a drive in the woods in their maroon 1997 Subaru Legacy Station Wagon and have not returned. There has been no contact with either subject since leaving on their drive. It is reported they usually drive on BLM roads, however there were no specific routes or plans relayed.
The Sheriff's Office is currently working with family of the Snyders. Both subject have medical conditions which require medication.
53 year-old Clyde Snyder is described as a white male approximately 6'00' 205 lbs brown hair and brown eyes. He was last seen in a yellow and black raincoat and blue jeans.
Peggy Snyder, age 54, is described as a white female approximately 5'04'' 270 lbs, brown hair and brown eyes. She was last known to be wearing a dark colored shirt and black jeans.
Their vehicle is a maroon 1997 Subaru Legacy station wagon with Oregon license plate YYM042. The attached image is of a similar vehicle.
Anyone with information is requested to call the Douglas County Sheriff's Office at 541-440-4471 and reference case number 17-0976.
**UPDATE 03/06/2017, 2:00 P.M.**
Today, the Oregon State Fire Marshal's Office has ruled the cause of the fire to be accidental with a space heater being the probable ignition source. There is a possibility the heater was in too close of a proximity to combustible material.
The Fire Marshal's Office advises residents should keep all combustible materials at least three feet away from a heat source, such as a heater.
The single surviving family member, 39 year-old James Howell, is remains at Legacy Emanuel Hospital in critical condition.
**Update-03-03-2017, 10:15 a.m.**
Yesterday evening, the Sheriff's Office received notification that Tabitha Howell and Andrew Hall-Young both succumbed to the injuries they received in Wednesday morning's fire.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation by the Oregon State Fire Marshall's Office. They have confirmed that there was a space heater present in the home, and have not ruled it out as a possible ignition source. However, until their investigation is complete, an official cause will not be released. To this point in the investigation, foul play is not suspected.
**Update-03-01-2017, 2:30 p.m.**
At the time of the fire, there were 7 household members present inside the residence. Four people died at the scene and three were transported to Mercy Medical Center and then transferred to Legacy Emanuel in Portland.
The status of all household members is as follows:
James Keith Howell / male - age 39 / Serious injuries / Transported to Legacy Emanuel.
Tabitha Annette Howell / female - age 38 / Serious injuries / Transported to Legacy Emanuel.
Andrew Hall-Young / male - age 13 / Serious injuries / Transported to Legacy Emanuel.
Gwendolyn Howell / female - age 4 / Deceased
Haley Maher / female - age 7 / Deceased
Isaiah Young / male - age 10 / Deceased
Nicholas Lowe / male - age 13 / Deceased
Investigators are still at the home, processing the fire scene. No further updates are expected today.
Next of kin has been notified.
Just after 2:00 a.m. this morning, a house fire was reported in the 700 block of E. Third Ave, Riddle. The Riddle and Tri-City Fire Departments both responded. There are multiple fatalities and multiple injuries. The injured are very seriously injured and have been transported to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland.
At this time, the Oregon State Fire Marshall's Office and the Arson Investigation Unit of the Oregon State Police are at the scene assisting the Sheriff's Office with the investigation.
Further information about the victims will be released after appropriate family notifications have been made.
The Douglas County Search and Rescue unit has had three call-outs in the last 24 hours.
* Richard Williams, age 19, and Jaime Bell, age 18, (city of residence unknown) became stuck in the snow in the 20000-block of South Myrtle Road in their Jeep Wrangler. Williams had been shoveling snow for approximately two hours to free the vehicle without success. Search crews were deployed and located the pair. Both subjects were uninjured and in good condition when SAR units located them.
* 19 year old Jacob Burrell (city of residence unknown) became stuck in the snow on a BLM road near Lane County off of the London Hill Road. Burrell had shoveled for several hours, but was unable to free his vehicle. SAR advised Burrell to stay with his vehicle. He was eventually found and led out of the woods. He was uninjured and in good condition when located.
* Lane County Search and Rescue requested assistance from Douglas County SAR to assist in the rescue of two cross-country skiers on Warner Mountain. Douglas County's Snow Cat team, along with Lane County teams, located the stranded skiers and extracted them from the area. The subjects were uninjured and in good condition.
The Sheriff's Office would like to remind the public to recreate safely. Know your driving limitations as well as those of your vehicle. Take plenty of food and water as well as weather appropriate clothing and warming supplies. Take a fully charged communication device, but don't rely on your cell phone alone. Tell someone where you are going and what time you plan to return - then stick to that plan.
On Friday, February 24th The Roseburg Optimist Club held their annual Respect For Law Banquet. As part of their tradition, they honored law enforcement officers from each agency within Douglas County. This event draws law enforcement officers and citizens from all over the county.
This year the Optimist Club issued the following awards to DCSO employees:
PATROL DEPUTY OF THE YEAR: Deputy Aaron Gardner was honored as the Patrol Deputy of the Year. Deputy Gardner is stationed in our Reedsport Office. He has been a Deputy with the Sheriff's Office for nearly three years. Prior to that he was a Patrol Officer with the City of Reedsport and Weston Police Departments.
Deputy Gardner was chosen for the award based on several large scale investigations he worked and the personal attention he has put into each one. Deputy Gardner was also credited with his willingness to help any of his fellow deputies.
Sheriff Hanlin said, "Over the past year, this individual has performed with relentless determination and resolve on his investigations and has made a significant impact on the safety of the entire county." The Sheriff also said, "I personally appreciate his work ethic and his positive can do attitude."
DISPATCHER OF THE YEAR: Communications Officer Katie Hutchings was nominated by several of her fellow dispatchers for the honor of Dispatcher of the Year. Communications Officer Hutchings has been with the Sheriff's Office since February of 2010.
When presenting the award, Sheriff Hanlin said, "The 9-1-1 center has been professionally represented in the community this year thanks to Katie's hard work awith several outreach programs."
Communications Officer Hutchings has been actively involved in the community by working with children and providing information about how to properly use 9-1-1. Her fellow dispatchers can attest that she is always willing to cover shifts when the center is short staffed or when others need time off. She takes pride in her profession and has a postitive attitude, that doesn't let the stress or negativity get to her.
CORRECTIONS DEPUTY OF THE YEAR: Deputy Peter Collins was selected at the Corrections Deputy of the Year based on his reliability, desire to learn and the acceptance of additional duties. Deputy Collins began working in the Corrections Division in August of 2008. Deputy Collins is an experienced Corrections Deputy and oftens serves as an Acting Watch Commander. He makes sound practical decisions and is always fair, but firm.
"This employee is exceptionally involved with the Sheriff's Office in general and the Corrections Division specifically. He consistently demonstrates his dedication to this organization and to the community he serves.", remarked Sheriff Hanlin.
Please help us in congratulating these exceptional public employees.
The 911 lines have been restored. Affected residents should now be able to dial 911 from their landline telephone.
**** ORIGINAL RELEASE ****
The Douglas County 9-1-1 center has been notified of telephone service outage effecting 265 customers in the Azalea area. The outage is due to a fiber optic line that was cut. At this time there is no estimated time of repair.
This outage will prohibit residents in the area from dialing 9-1-1 from their landline telephones. However, they should be able to reach 9-1-1 on a cellular telephone if they have cell service. If a resident does not have cell service, they may go to the Azalea Fire Department for assistance.