Salem Police Department
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News Releases
Traffic Team to focus on seat belt use awareness - 01/31/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 31, 2023

Traffic Team to focus on seat belt use awareness

Salem, Ore. — The Salem Police Traffic Team and other law enforcement agencies across the state are focusing of safety education to save lives through the nationally-recognized Click It or Ticket campaign. The safety effort helps bring awareness to drivers and their passengers on the importance of seat belt use to prevent injuries and fatalities in traffic collisions.

“It’s important to take the time to make sure you and your passengers are secure before turning on the ignition to go,” said Lieutenant Michael Bennett who oversees the Traffic Team. “And let’s not forget the kids. Proper use of child safety seats is important.”

The Salem Police Traffic Team also offers assistance with child car seat installation. Several team members and staff are certified technicians. Added Bennett, “If parents, grandparents, or even caregivers, need a little help with proper fit or installation of a car seat, we encourage them to call us to make an appointment.” 

Keeping our city streets safe for pedestrians, bicyclists, as well as motorists and passengers, is an essential component of the Salem Police Department’s 2022-2024 Strategic Plan under the priority area of Safety. The Click It or Ticket campaign and other awareness efforts done by the Traffic Team throughout the year help the department take a comprehensive approach to reducing fatal and injury collisions, as well as increasing community education and outreach.

The focused-enforcement campaign, funded by federal grant monies through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, started Monday, January 30 and runs through February 12.

To make an appointment to have a child safety seat checked, please contact the Salem Police Traffic Team at 503-588-6293. 

Learn more about the work done by the Salem Police Traffic Team in 2022.

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Police Chiefs and Sheriff issue a statement to the residents of Marion County regarding the death of Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee - 01/28/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 28, 2023

Police Chiefs and Sheriff issue a statement to the residents of Marion County

regarding the death of Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee

 

We, as a law enforcement community in Marion County, find the actions of the police officers involved in the death of Tyre Nichols to be unconscionable. Collectively, we commend Memphis Police Chief Davis for acting quickly to hold those involved accountable.

We hold a deep respect for the sanctity of human life and basic human dignity. Inhumane acts deeply impact all who understand and hold true to the responsibilities of the badge we wear.

We affirm that excessive force is not tolerated by our agencies. Multiple layers of review and accountability are in place to ensure such heinous acts do not occur. Lack of dignity and respect toward those we serve simply run completely counter to who we are as individual officers and deputies and as your law enforcement leaders.

The honorable men and women who work to safeguard the residents of Marion County will continue to work diligently and with conviction to build positive and trusting relationships with all our residents.

 

Sheriff Joe Kast, Marion County Sheriff’s Office                                                                 

Chief Trevor Womack, Salem Police Department

Chief Jim Anglemeier, Silverton Police Department 

Chief Mark Chase, Gervais Police Department

Chief Mark Daniel, Mount Angel Police Department                                                         

Chief Damien Flowers, Aumsville Police Department

Chief Gwen Johns, Stayton Police Department                                                               

Chief Martin Pilcher, Woodburn Police Department

Chief David Rash, Hubbard Police Department                                                                 

Chief Don Taylor, Turner Police Department

Chief John Teague, Keizer Police Department

Armed robber arrested - 01/27/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 27, 2023

Armed robber arrested

Salem, Ore. — Detectives from the Violent Crimes Unit made an arrest today as part of an investigation into an armed robbery at Marion Parkade earlier this month.

On January 11, 2023 at approximately 5:45 p.m., a young man reported he was robbed of his belongings by a male individual he had recently met at the downtown mall. The victim and the suspect were at the roof of the parking structure when the suspect pulled a gun out of his pocket, racked the slide, and pointed it at the victim, demanding the property he carried.

The suspect, Jeffery Prach, age 19, was arrested early this morning when officers observed him walking in the downtown area. Prach was in possession of a firearm when officers took him into custody.

Prach is now lodged at the Marion County Jail on first-degree robbery and other related weapons charges.

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Late evening hit and run collision in southeast Salem - 01/23/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 23, 2023

Late evening hit and run collision in southeast Salem

Salem, Ore. — Salem Police and other emergency responders were called to the intersection of Lancaster DR & Rickey ST SE at approximately 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 21, on the report of a hit and run involving a pedestrian. 

Arriving officers located a woman, identified as 26-year-old Julia Wade, with significant injuries. She was transported to Salem Health by paramedics. Wade was later transferred to Oregon Health Sciences University Hospital for further medical care.

Witnesses to the incident reported the pedestrian was struck by a pick-up truck driven by an adult man who did not stop and fled the scene. A witness was able to provide officers with details about the direction of travel of the suspect vehicle. Officers from the Keizer Police Department were able to locate and detain the suspect in the 1900 block of Claxter RD NE where he was arrested by Salem Police officers.

The driver is identified as 49-year-old Eric Raymond Webb. He was lodged at the Marion County Jail on the following charges:

  • Assault in the second degree
  • Reckless driving
  • Failure to perform the duties of driver to injured persons
  • Criminal driving while suspended or revoked 
  • Attempt to elude police officer

The incident remains under investigation by the Salem Police Traffic Team, and no further details are available for release.

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Armed robbery response leads to suspect shot - 01/23/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 23, 2023

Armed robbery response leads to suspect shot 

Salem, Ore. — At approximately 9:00 a.m. today, Salem Police officers were involved in a deadly use of force incident resulting in the death of a suspect.

Officers were called to the scene of an armed robbery in progress in the parking lot of the Walmart store at 5250 block of Commercial ST SE. The suspect then moved north to the Planet Fitness as officers responded.

The suspect then ran to the Napa Auto Parts Store at 5105 Commercial ST SE. Officers confronted the suspect in the parking lot and gunfire was exchanged. The suspect was struck and died at the scene.

No officers were injured in the incident.

The names of the suspect and the officers involved will not be released at this time.

The Marion County Law Enforcement Officer Deadly Use of Force Plan under Senate Bill 111 has been initiated for this incident, and Oregon State Police will be conducting the primary investigation. 

Additionally, per the use of force plan protocol, all future case updates will be provided by the Oregon State Police. 

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Detectives handle suspicious death of child - UPDATE - 01/21/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 20, 2023

 

Detectives handle suspicious death of child

Update 01/21/2023 | 2:45 p.m.

The investigation into the suspicious death of a six-year-old child led to the arrest of the boy’s father, Robby-Joe Alexander Davenport, and Davenport’s domestic partner, Cierra Wiedner.

Davenport, age 29, and Wiedner, age 25, were each charged with criminal mistreatment in the first degree.

An autopsy was completed by the State Medical Examiner’s Office, not the Marion County Medical Examiner’s Office as previously reported.

No further information is available for release by the Salem Police Department. Media inquiries concerning this investigation will now be handled by the Marion County District Attorney’s Office.

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Originally published 01/20/2023 | 7:15 p.m.

Salem, Ore. — Salem Police detectives are currently investigating the death of a six-year-old child.

At approximately 8:45 a.m. today, emergency responders were called to a residence in the 600 block of 18th ST SE on the call of a child reported to be unresponsive. The child was transported by ambulance to Salem Health where they later died.

An autopsy will be performed by the Marion County Medical Examiner’s Office to determine the cause of death.

At this time the incident is being handled by the Salem Police Special Victims Unit as a suspicious death investigation. No further information is being released. 

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From L: Police Chief Womack, Deputy Chief Burke, and Det. Brassfield
From L: Police Chief Womack, Deputy Chief Burke, and Det. Brassfield
Salem Police detective recognized as top forensic examiner (Photo) - 01/12/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 12, 2023

 

Salem Police detective recognized as top forensic examiner

Salem, Ore. — A tenured detective with the Salem Police Criminal Investigations Section was given top honors last week for his work as a digital forensic examiner.

On January 4, the US Secret Service’s National Computer Forensics Institute (NCFI) recognized Detective Matt Brassfield for being one of the nation’s top 50 examiners in the field of digital forensics in 2022. The veteran detective ranked 47th from amongst more than 1,500 participating examiners all across the country. The field of digital forensics involves the recovery and investigation of material found on a variety of digital devices, such as small digital storage container, mobile phones and records, computers, and network storage systems.

“The use of digital technology in the commission of crimes continues to grow,” said Deputy Chief Jake Burke who oversees the Investigations Division. “Detective Brassfield’s skill and knowledge in the field of forensics is essential to the successful prosecution and closure of numerous persons and property crimes. We are very proud he is being recognized for his work and expertise.” 

Brassfield, who has worked in the field of computer forensics for six years, was previously honored by NCFI in 2019 and 2020.

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One arrested after minor traffic crash - 01/04/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: January 4, 2023

One arrested after minor traffic crash

Salem, Ore. — One man was arrested on Tuesday afternoon after a minor traffic collision led to gunfire and assault.

At approximately 4:40 p.m. on January 3, Salem Police officers responded to the intersection of Lancaster DR and Market ST NE on the report of a traffic crash. Officers learned the male driver of a crossover sedan used a firearm to shoot at a mid-size SUV he believed struck his vehicle. The man driving the SUV was pulling over to the side of the road when the driver of the sedan, identified as Samuel Bailey Caster-Winegeart, approached the SUV, and yelled a racial slur at the driver who is Black. Caster-Winegeart, who is White, then punched through the partially-open window of the SUV, striking the driver of the SUV in the face.

The 55-year-old driver of the SUV was not struck by the gunfire but transported to Salem Health for treatment of injuries related to the physical assault.

Officers lodged Caster-Winegeart, age 25, at the Marion County Jail on the following charges:

  • Bias crime in the first degree
  • Assault in the fourth degree
  • Unlawful use of a weapon, firearm
  • Menacing
  • Reckless endangering
  • Criminal mischief in the second degree

Caster-Winegeart is due to be arraigned today at the Marion County Circuit Court Annex at 2:30 p.m., and as such, all further inquiries concerning this investigation should be directed to the Marion County District Attorney’s Office.

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