The Lake Oswego Police Department (LOPD) is a full-service police force whose mission is to cultivate an exceptional quality of life for everyone in our community.
The Police Department carries out its mission through a range of divisions with activities that range from criminal investigations and traffic law enforcement to education programs and behavioral health specialty. The Department also fields two K-9 teams, provides two school resource officers, and operates a 911 emergency dispatch center. LOPD serves our Lake Oswego community of residents, visitors, and local businesses spanning an area of 11 square miles.
The Patrol Division is the outward face of every police department. Patrol is responsible for the initial handling of all dispatched police calls and being the eyes on the streets, day or night. To ensure continuous patrol, there are three shifts covering seven days a week, 24 hours a day.
One unique quality of LOPD is our officers are committed to responding to almost any call for service that the community feels is important. In most circumstances when an officer handles a call, that call is handled by that same officer throughout the entire investigation. Having the officers manage the call in its entirety builds a relationship of trust and communication with LOPD and our community members.
The Patrol Support Unit and traffic team provide enforcement of traffic safety laws, including speeding, distracted driving, DUII, and a range of other issues. Additionally, each of the officers assigned to the traffic team is a member of Clackamas County C.R.A.F.T. (Crime Re-construction and Forensics Team) and assists in the investigation of fatal, serious injury, and traffic crime-related crashes, as well as all homicides in Clackamas County.
The Detectives Division is responsible for assisting Patrol with complex and long-term criminal investigations. They receive advanced training in investigative techniques, evidence collection, child abuse, financial investigations, crime scene investigations, homicide, search warrants, interviewing, and many other topics. They also serve on the Clackamas County Major Crimes Team, which works cooperatively to investigate major crimes in our county that require more resources than any one agency possesses.
Police dogs are one of the most effective and diverse tools used in policing – and some of the community’s favorite ‘officers’. The K-9 unit assists in the search and rescue of missing people, tracking and locating criminal suspects, and searching for discarded evidence or clues. By using the dogs’ keen sense of smell, we are able to reduce the number of officers needed for a search, perform more thorough searches, and help keep our officers and the community safe during the apprehension of dangerous suspects. The K-9 teams undergo extensive training through the Oregon Police Canine Association, including 400 training hours over the course of 10 weeks.
School Resource Officers (SRO) provide consistent and readily available support for various K-12 schools within the Lake Oswego School District. To support positive interactions and trust with our youth, the three main roles of an effective SRO are: Educator, Informal Counselor/Mentor, and Law Enforcement Officer. The described triad model for SROs has been identified as a national best practice in schools. This ongoing trust and relationship building supports a safer and more productive learning environment for our youth.
One unique specialty LOPD has is an on-staff Adult Resource Officer. With the desire to continually improve our responses to calls, the Adult Resource Officer (ARO) serves as the liaison with the City’s older population, persons with physical and/or mental health issues, or those experiencing difficulties with substance abuse. The ARO works to connect them to appropriate State and local resources specializing in health and wellness, drug use interdiction and treatment, and other quality-of-life programs and when necessary, conducts investigations in these areas.
The Behavioral Health Unit (BHU) is made up of one non-sworn Behavioral Health Specialist (BHS) that works with our officers to assess and address behavioral health issues within our community and in collaboration with other mental health resources. After on-site de-escalation services, the BHU can refer people to transitional housing, resources, mental health services, or back to their own providers for more follow-up care and services.
The Community Service Officers (CSO) are focused on community livability issues in order to support the patrol division and traffic safety unit. The work of the CSOs allows our police officers to focus on active calls for service and following up on cases. Community Service Officers help with code enforcement, traffic crashes, and traffic control, parking enforcement, abandoned vehicles, special events, and a wide range of other assignments.
The Training Division's primary role is to ensure our LOPD department is up-to-date on state certification mandates, training, and certifications, as well as provide relevant training to our community’s needs and call trends. The training could include firearms, defensive tactics, cultural diversity, mental health crises, emergency vehicle operations, de-escalation tactics, and more. By having training available in-house, we are able to provide training year-round tailored to our officers’ interests and opportunities to expand their skills.
The Lake Oswego Communications Center (LOCOM) is the 911 Dispatch Center. It handles all emergency and non-emergency telephone calls for Lake Oswego, West Linn, and Milwaukie Police Departments, as well as the Lake Oswego Fire Department. In addition to answering phones, these dedicated first responders also answer the police and fire radios, dispatch officers and firefighters to calls, and run computer records searches for officers.
As a reminder, 9-1-1 should only be used in life-threatening emergencies. For non-emergency, call (503) 635-0238 for public safety services and follow-up.
The Records Division processes all written reports and other documents generated within the Police Department and received from outside agencies. Records personnel enter, modify, and retrieve data in various computer systems, conduct local background checks, transcribe interviews related to sensitive cases, coordinate the City of Lake Oswego's alarm program, answer and route all incoming business telephone calls, and greet and assist all walk-in counter customers.
The primary purpose of the Property and Evidence Unit is to provide for the secure storage of all property that is in the custody of the police department until such a time that it is needed for analysis, court, or authorized for final disposal.