In 2016, the Astoria Police Department started working with a few different Astoria business owners, apartment complexes, and commercial property owners to try out a program that has been successfully used by several other police departments in Oregon to help reduce unwanted activity that occurs after business hours or when the person responsible for that property, or business, is not on site. The trial run showed promise and in 2017 the program was introduced as Property Watch. During 2017, 36 different commercial properties and businesses partnered with the Astoria Police Department by becoming a member of Property Watch.
There is no cost to be a member of this program which is open to commercial property owners, business owners, and apartment complex owners/managers that are in the city limits of Astoria. This program is not open to single family residential houses.
By being a member of this program, the Astoria Police have the legal authority to ask people who meet certain exclusion criteria to leave member properties even if the property owner or manager is not on the premises at the time the conduct is occurring. This is especially useful in addressing non-criminal situations like loitering or consumption of alcohol in public.
If you would like to know more about the Property Watch program you can visit the Astoria Police Department webpage, Facebook page, or email Sgt. Andrew Randall at: firstname.lastname@example.org .
On 12/27/2017 at about 8:43 am Astoria Police were contacted about a male subject associated with a Red Ford F150 vehicle, who was possibly trespassing on boats at North Tongue Point. The identity of the man was unknown at the time.
At 10:01 am Officers responded to the area of North Tongue Point because the man had returned. Officers made contact with 27 year old Timofey Erofeeff of Scotts Mills Oregon. Officers were investigating the previous trespass complaint and learned that Erofeeff was a corrections offender out of Deschutes County Oregon. Officers made contact with Erofeeff’s parole officer to advise that Erofeeff was being charged with Criminal Trespass II. Officers were advised to take him into custody for the Parole Violation as well. When the officers went back up to Erofeeff’s vehicle, Erofeeff drove off and was pursued for a short distance by officers. Erofeeff then drove the vehicle onto Pier 2 of North Tongue Point. Officers did not pursue the vehicle onto the pier, but Erofeeff continued driving the vehicle off the end of the pier, into the water.
Erofeeff was able to get out of his vehicle and swim away from officers a couple hundred feet from the pier. The US Coast Guard was notified and requested to assist. Erofeeff eventually swam back to the pier but due to the height of the pier above the water and no available way to get down to him, he was provided a life vest and a floatation disc but remained in the water until employees from WCT Marine were able to reach him with a skiff and pull him out of the water. Fishing Vessel Pacific Wind also came to the area to attempt rescue of Erofeeff. “I’m thankful the men from WCT Marine and Fishing Vessel Pacific Wind” were there and willing to help.” Said Deputy Chief Eric Halverson. “Mr. Erofeeff should be thankful too.”
Erofeeff was transferred to Medix Ambulance who was waiting on shore. He was treated at Columbia Memorial Hospital for hypothermia and released to an Astoria Police officer who transported him to Clatsop County Jail where he was lodged on charges of Criminal Trespass II, Parole Violation, Attempt to Elude a Police Officer, Reckless Driving and Escape III. So far the vehicle has not been recovered from the river. Astoria Police have been in contact with the US Coast Guard regarding the vehicle to determine the next steps.
On 12/21/2017 at about 9:24 p.m. Astoria Police were dispatched to Small Stop Convenience store located at 180 Marine Dr. for what was originally reported as a theft. An Astoria Officer located a person in a nearby parking lot with a cloth covering the individual’s face. Another responding officer made contact at the store and learned that the suspect gave the clerk a robbery note, demanded money and appeared to be holding what the clerk believed was a gun or other weapon in his pocket. The clerk armed himself with a knife and did not give the suspect any money. Prior to leaving the store the suspect took a candy bar.
Clatsop County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to assist Astoria Officers at the scene.
The suspect, later identified as 24-year-old Brandon Denmark of Marietta, Georgia refused to show officers his hands and was holding something in his pocket which appeared to be silver. One officer pointed a less lethal, bean bag shotgun and advised the subject he would be bean bagged if he didn’t comply. The suspect then gave up and was taken into custody without further incident. The silver object was later determined to be a cellular phone.
Denmark was charged with Robbery II, a class B felony, Theft III, a class C misdemeanor, and Disorderly Conduct II, a class B misdemeanor. He was transported to Clatsop County Jail where he was lodged on the charges.
The Astoria Police Department is currently investigating an ongoing series of crimes involving a subject or subjects using a BB or Pellet Gun to shoot out windows in different areas of the city. So far the suspect/s have been targeting parked vehicles and in one case a window at a church.
The suspect/s may be on foot or in a vehicle. So far the locations have mainly been in neighborhoods above the downtown area, and have been going on sporadically over the last several weeks.
“While the suspect/s seem to be getting enjoyment from their actions, it places financial burdens and severe inconvenience on the victims of these senseless crimes” said Deputy Chief Eric Halverson.
Anyone with any information that could assist the police with this investigation are asked to call Sgt. Christopher McNeary at 503 325-4411 or email at email@example.com.
Thank you and have a safe holiday season.