Crime & Law

Crime, Law & Justice

The police chief of Junction City is suing the municipality and the former City Administrator. Junction City Police Chief Mark Chase says his First Amendments rights were violated. In his complaint, he asserts he was denied due process when then-City Administrator, Melissa Bowers, discriminated against him based on his Christian faith.

Portland attorney Sean Riddell represents the Police Chief.

Eugene 4J

South Eugene High School and Roosevelt Middle School were placed on lockdown Wednesday morning for about 45 minutes.

A Eugene Police SWAT team member was dropping his child off at the YMCA Wednesday morning. He was wearing his camouflage uniform. A school district delivery driver contacted police saying that there was an armed man near South Eugene High School. Eugene 4j Spokeswoman Kerry Delf says even though it's stressful for a school to go into lockdown, everyone did what they should.

President Barack Obama has signed the USA Freedom Act into law, just hours after Congress sent it to his desk. Oregon's U.S. Senator Ron Wyden praised passage of the Freedom Act, which changes how the government can conduct surveillance and gather data, which was put in place under the Patriot Act.

On Tuesday, Sen. Wyden said it is not an exaggeration to say passage of the Freedom Act is the most significant victory for Americans' privacy rights in more than a decade. The Democrat said Americans do not need to sacrifice their liberty to have security.

Benton County

Benton County plans to ask voters to pay for a new, larger jail. The funding measure will be on the November ballot.

The current Benton County Jail was built in 1976. It's in downtown Corvallis, adjacent to the historic courthouse. The jail can house up to 40 inmates. Benton County Sheriff Scott Jackson says the county rents up to 40 beds from other jails and has to turn away more than 100 inmates a year. He wants voters to see for themselves that the jail needs replacing. The Sheriff is offering tours every Saturday.

Noah Dewitt's family

A body recovered from Eugene's sewage system has been identified as 24-year-old Noah Dewitt.
Eugene police spokeswoman Melinda McLaughlin said Sunday that Dewitt was last seen in mid-February, when he was reported missing by a friend who said he had left a home in distress in the early morning hours.
Dewitt's body was found Thursday in a concrete underground well at a pump station that collects waste from south and west Eugene. Police say a crew found the body while doing twice-a-year maintenance.

Updated May 15th, 2015 6:53 AM

Kaitlyne Wirth is in custody and is no longer sought by law enforcement.
An AMBER Alert was activated in Oregon following a request from the Tillamook City Police Department Thursday evening in an attempt to locate a female child and a female suspect. The vehicle and child were located near Cottage Grove on HWY 99. The AMBER Alert was canceled shortly after.

Lane County Jail

A British man is being held on $1.5-million bail at the Lane County Jail for allegedly raping a 10-year-old girl in Eugene after meeting her online.

22-year-old Gareth Hall of Wales was arrested May 2nd at Chicago O'Hare International Airport when he tried to reenter the United States. A warrant had been issued for his arrest after Eugene Police investigated a trip the man made to Eugene in mid-April.

Eugene Police detective Jed McGuire said Hall had been communicating with a 10-year-old girl in Eugene for several months online before travelling to Oregon to meet her.

Senator Floyd Prozanski

The Oregon legislature may extend its statute of limitations for rape and sexual assault to 12 years. That bill is expected to get a public hearing in the next 2 weeks in Salem.

Last month, the state house voted to double the statute of limitations for people to report sexual assault. The bill is now in the Senate Judiciary committee, which is chaired by Democratic Senator Floyd Prozanksi. He says the statute of limitations is currently at 6 years.

Rachael McDonald

As the weather warms up in the Pacific Northwest, more people are riding their bicycles. But in bike-friendly college towns like Eugene and Corvallis, bike theft also increases during the spring and summer.

It's a story many people who commute by bicycle know well. Eugene resident Aaron Brussat had locked his bike outside of Falling Sky Home Fermentation Supply Shop, where he worked.

Unpacking Videos of Police Shootings

May 6, 2015
Rowan Moore Gerety

Over the past year, a string of police killings of unarmed Black men has prompted a national conversation around use of force and racial bias in policing. It’s a conversation often shaped by viral videos documenting those incidents.