Salem Police Dept.
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News Releases
Salem Police Investigating Fatal Crash - 05/22/17

The Salem Police Department Traffic Control Unit is investigating a fatal crash that occurred on the morning of Saturday, May 20.

Officers were dispatched to the intersection of Portland Rd NE and Chemawa Rd NE at approximately 7:06 am on a report of a crash. The investigation has shown that a tan colored 1997 Honda Accord that was being driven northbound on Portland Rd NE was crossing the intersection with Chemawa Rd when it was struck by a westbound 2015 Dodge Ram Pickup truck. The force of the impact caused the Honda to spin, striking a 2015 Ford Escape that was being driven southbound on Portland Rd. There were two people in the Ford Escape, both of them escaping injury.

A passenger in the Honda Accord that was in the right front seat of the vehicle died at the scene. He has been identified as 32-year old Paul Michael Peterson of Albany. His next of kin has been notified. The driver of the Honda Accord was 51-year old Ricky Lee Bias of Salem. He was transported to the hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. The driver of the pickup truck, 49-year old Obed Lopez-Medina of Silverton, was also transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. A passenger in the pickup truck was not injured.

The investigation remains under investigation. Investigators are asking for anyone who may have seen the crash or have any information about it to contact the Salem Police Department Traffic Control Unit at 503-588-6171.


Text-To-911 campaign slogan
Text-To-911 campaign slogan
Text-To-911 service to launch in Salem and additional Oregon communities (Photo) - 05/22/17

Effective today, May 22, the Willamette Valley Communications Center debuts the Text-To-911 service in Marion, Polk and Lincoln counties. WVCC, which dispatches for 29 police, fire and ambulance services in the three counties, has completed testing and is now accepting text messages to 911 on Monday.

Text-To-911 is now be an option for residents with wireless devices who need emergency assistance, but they cannot call because the situation is too dangerous. The service will be especially beneficial to community members who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, or speech-impaired.
"We're excited to unveil Text-To911 to the residents in our service area," said WVCC Operations Manager Tony Collins. "In addition to testing its functionality, we've been working with student groups from the deaf community to teach them about the service and let them practice using it." Those with hearing or speech impairments will now be able to text for assistance directly, rather than relying on a telecommunication relay service or other third party method.

Calling 911 in an emergency is still the preferred way to request help, as reminded in the slogan, Call if you can, text if you can't. Videos featuring the slogan were produced in English, American Sign Language, and Spanish to help residents understand the service.

The following situations help describe when use of the Text-To-911 service would be appropriate:
* A deaf or hard-of-hearing individual with a speech disability who needs emergency assistance;
* A caller who is unable to speak due to a medical issue or condition; and
* A caller who finds themselves in a situation where speaking out loud would put them in danger, such as a home invasion, an abduction, or a domestic violence incident.
Tips for texting 911 include:
* Try to keep calm.
* Know your location. The dispatcher will need the location to send help. The Text-To-911 service differs from voice calls to 911 as your location is not displayed on the dispatcher's screen.
* Text in simple words and avoid using abbreviations or emojis.
* If it is safe to do so, keep the text function on your phone open until the dispatcher concludes the conversation.
* If you do not want to be heard, please don't forget to silence your phone.

The Text-To-911 service is made possible through the wireless providers and a third party application which directs the text message to WVCC.

The WVCC law enforcement agencies which will make the service available to their residents include Dallas Police Department, Falls City 911 Answering Center, Gervais Police Department, Grand Ronde Tribal Police, Independence Police Department, Keizer Police Department, Lincoln County Sheriff's Office, Marion County Sheriff's Office, Newport Police Department, Polk County Sheriff's Office, Salem Police Department.

The service will also be available to the following WVCC fire and ambulance service agencies: Central Coast Fire & Ambulance, Dallas Fire Department, Depoe Bay Rural Fire Protection District, Falls City Fire Department, Keizer RFPD, Marion County RFPD #1, Newport Fire Department, Pacific West Ambulance, Polk County RFPD #1, Salem Fire Department, Salem Suburban RFPD, Seal Rock RFPD, Siletz Valley RFPD, South Lincoln Ambulance, Southwest Polk RFPD, Spring Valley RFPD, Yachats RFPD.


Video links:

Attached Media Files: Text-To-911 campaign slogan
Salem Police to Continue Specialized DUII Enforcement Campaigns - 05/03/17

The Salem Police Department will be continuing with specialized patrols to target those who are Driving Under The Influence of Intoxicants.

The overtime patrols shifts, funded by Oregon Impact and the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), will continue to focus on the very dangerous issue of driving while impaired.

During the month of April, one officer worked on one of these focused patrols, arresting three people for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants while issuing an additional 19 citations and warnings to other drivers for other violations.

As an agency during the month of April, Salem Police officers arrested 52 people for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants, cited three people for Minor in Possession of Alcohol, issued 125 citations for Driving With a Suspended License, 18 citations for driving without a seatbelt, six for driving while using a cellular phone and issued another 1,192 citations and warnings for various other offenses.

The Salem Police Department and our partners such as Oregon Impact and NHTSA are committed to keeping our community safe through traffic safety enforcement and education.

# # #

Suspect Arrested After Vehicle Runs Into Bar-UPDATE-Video Status - 05/03/17

*** UPDATE 05-03-17/10:35 am ***

The file size of the video is too large to be attached to the release. Please email me at if you would like the video sent directly to you.


A Salem man has been arrested on multiple charges after driving his vehicle through the wall of a Salem bar.

The incident occurred at the Triangle Inn at 3215 Liberty Rd S at about 12:30 am this morning. 29-year old Daniel Leonard Wise had just left the establishment and went outside. Soon after he left the bar, a 2015 Subaru Forester came crashing through the wall of the bar, coming to rest completely inside of the establishment. Wise was driving the vehicle and was not injured, but he had to be helped from the vehicle by other patrons at the bar. One other patron sustained minor injuries and was treated and released at the hospital.

Wise was taken into custody at the scene for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants, Reckless Driving, eight counts of Recklessly Endangering Another Person, Criminal Mischief in the First Degree and a felony charge of Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver Involved in an Injury Accident.

There are no damage estimates for the bar at this time, and the incident remains under investigation. A surveillance video clip is attached.


Salem Police camo-fallen-heroes
Salem Police camo-fallen-heroes
May commemorates veterans in many ways (Photo) - 05/01/17

May is a unique month for the commemoration of military service members and veterans and the Salem Police Department is honored to revel in those tributes this month with a little help from the Salem Police Foundation and White Oak Construction.

The month of May hosts several tributes in various forms related to those who serve and have served, such as National Military Appreciation Month, Armed Forces Day (Saturday, May 13 this year) and Memorial Day which in their own ways remind us to show our gratitude and pay tribute to the men and women who serve.

As an agency, the Salem Police Department greatly values service, but most especially because one in every five Salem officers has served in the military or currently serves.

On Monday, May 1, the Salem Police Department unveiled a new patrol vehicle wrap which has an overarching military theme. The camo-covered car displays the logos of the five United States armed forces, the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, and Navy.

The vehicle also carries the phrase, "In honor of our #FallenHeroes". Sgt. Brandon Ditto, an Army veteran and one of 46 Salem Police officers with military service, provided input on the project. "We are thankful to be able to recognize all military members and veterans for National Military Appreciation Month," said Ditto and further explained, "Yet, the significance of Memorial Day cannot be overstated as we honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice to preserve our freedoms."

"Officer Jared Noack came up with the idea of a special wrap recognizing veterans in the community and on the force, "said Deputy Chief Steve Bellshaw of the Salem Police Department. Dan Wellert, President of the Salem Police Foundation and operations manager at White Oak Construction immediately showed enthusiastic support for the idea. White Oak Construction has military service at their core. Superintendent Rob Hagerman and Project Manager Will Horsey both served more than two decades in the Army and both attribute their current careers to the skills they learned in service to their country.

The camouflage patrol vehicle is the third vehicle to be revamped to raise awareness for a cause valued by the department and important to the community. Just like the October pink patrol rig for Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the April blue cruiser for Child Abuse Prevention Month, the camo car will be assigned to the Patrol Division for daily use. The department's social media platform will use the hashtags #FallenHeroes and #CamoCar to post photos and video of the vehicle throughout the city during the month of May, and encourages residents to do the same.

Members of the White Oak Construction Company and board members from the Salem Police Foundation joined command staff and police officers who are military members or veterans for a photo opportunity at the World War II Memorial downtown.

B-Roll is available for the media:


Salem Police Sergeant Retires (Photo) - 04/28/17

Salem Police Department Detective Sergeant Alan "Al" Graham retired today after serving the citizens of the Mid-Willamette Valley for 33 years.

Sergeant Graham was joined by friends, family, co-workers, Salem Police retirees and partners in the criminal justice community on Friday afternoon at a retirement ceremony at Pringle Hall. Chief Jerry Moore and Deputy Police Chief George Burke presided over the ceremony, bidding Sergeant Graham farewell and wishing him well in retirement.

Sgt Graham began his public service in 1984 as a Salem Police Cadet. He then became a Polk County Sheriff's Reserve Deputy and worked on Marine Patrol from 1986-1988, when he became an Independence Police Department Reserve Police Officer. He was hired as a full time Independence Police Officer in 1990, then was hired as a Salem Police Officer in 1992.

During his tenure with the Salem Police Department, Sgt Graham worked as a patrol officer and as a detective in the Crimes Against Persons Unit for about seven years. He was a member of the department SWAT team for 12 years, six of them as a team leader. He was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2006 and worked as a patrol supervisor as well as two separate rotations as the Crimes Against Persons supervisor.

Sgt Graham accumulated numerous letters of commendation from both community members and members of the criminal justice community as well. He is well known for his strong sense of commitment, his caring for those with whom he has worked, strong sense of right and wrong, and his distinctive voice and sense of humor.

Sgt Graham plans to enjoy his time with his family and friends, and the Salem Police Family wishes him a long and happy retirement.


Attached Media Files: Graham_Al.jpg