Astoria Police have received reports today that someone is spoofing the Police Department’s official phone number, 503-325-4411and is posing as an Officer in Administrative Services. The imposter provides a number to call which leads to a voicemail box with a person claiming to be our actual Administrative Services Manager and directs people to leave a call back number. The caller claims to have legal documents and that it is imperative that they be called back. It is important to be aware that scammers may use different types of ruses, like claiming arrest warrants exist or that the call is regarding a background check. Despite the type of ruse the end result is the same. The scammer is trying to obtain money or personal information.
If you receive a call from someone claiming to be a police officer, and asking you to move money, provide bank account pin information or in any other way send funds; it is a scam and you should hang up and report it to your local law enforcement agency. “This is not how legitimate police agencies operate”, said Deputy Chief Eric Halverson. “Don’t provide any information, just hang up and call your local law enforcement agency”, Halverson said.
In response to this fraudulent activity, the police department advises the community to verify the authenticity of any call claiming to be from their department or an officer. Residents receiving calls they question or believe are fraudulent are encouraged to contact the Astoria Police Department Dispatch Center directly by calling 503-325-4411 to confirm the legitimacy of any communication.
On 01/30/2024 at 2:10 AM, Astoria Emergency Communications Center received a report of a structure fire at 66 W. Bond Street. Prompting a response by Astoria Fire Department, Astoria Police Department, Knappa Fire Department, Lewis and Clark Fire Department, Warrenton Fire Department, Olney Walluski Fire Department and Seaside Fire Department. On arrival the residence was engulfed in flames. Two residents staying in the basement apartment were able to evacuate the building on their own. Police Officers ended up forcing entry into the neighboring residence and were able to evacuate a single occupant there. That home sustained fire damage as well.
The 911 caller who was passing through the area observed a male subject in the yard of the residence as it was in flames. That individual was determined not to be related to either residence and was transported to Columbia Memorial Hospital for an unrelated medical issue.
The Clatsop County Fire Investigation Team, and Detectives from Astoria Police Department, Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office, Cannon Beach Police Department, Seaside Police Department and the Oregon State Police Arson Unit conducted a fire cause investigation at the scene.
Following the investigation, 52-year-old Derrick Brett Gill of Pacific County Washington was arrested on 2 counts of Arson in the First Degree, 3 Counts of Reckless Endangering and 2 Counts of Criminal Mischief in the First Degree.