Citizen Patrols or similarly named programs have been in existence for many years. During WWII the nation lost many of its police officers due to being drafted into military service. This gap was filled with some of the first Citizen Patrols whom augmented law enforcement agencies in non-enforcement functions. Our agency's Citizen Patrol program began in 2010 with the main purpose of deterring vehicle break-ins in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. Members act as extra "eyes and ears" for law enforcement and work under the VIPS ("Volunteers in Policing") program. In 2019, the Citizen Patrol partnered with the City of Fairview to patrol their area parks. Since the Unit's inception, Citizen Patrol volunteers have repeatedly provided patrol deputies with information that has led to the arrest of numerous suspects for crimes ranging from "car prowls" to sexual crimes.
The Citizen Patrol has two missions:
1) To help reduce crime and fear of crime. This is accomplished by being visibly present in the community and by recognizing and reporting suspicious activity to law enforcement. This is typically accomplished via patrols in the community and the Columbia River Gorge. The Citizen Patrol also assists at numerous community events.
2) To enhance resilience within the community during times of natural disasters and other large-scale emergencies. This is done by providing security, damage assessments, door-to-door notifications, radio communications support and logistical support for the community and 1st Responders.
The Citizen Patrol program receives no funding. Money for rain jacket, shirts, ball caps, radios, flashlights and other equipment items are generally member purchased. We recently received $7800 in federal grant money for uniform items. However, the Citizen Patrol does not have a budget. YOUR DONATIONS HELP!
Please write a check to NEMCCA (the NE Multnomah County Community Association) and write, "Citizen Patrol" in the memo line. Mail check to:
Multnomah County Sheriff's Office
Attention: Deputy Joe Graziano ****NOTE Below****
234 SW Kendall Ct.
Troutdale, OR 97060
NEMCCA is a non-profit neighborhood association. Tax ID-
***NOTE- Deputy Graziano is retiring 9/16/20. Please contact MCSO directly to inquire about his replacement for contact information.
Successful "Catches" and Missions
2011- Citizen Patrollers noticed suspicious activity at Multnomah Falls. They called the non-emergency number and a deputy arrested a man that stole numerous items from the gift shop.
2012- Citizens Patrollers recognized two "car prowl" suspects at the Sandy River Delta due to a flier given to them by deputy. The volunteers contacted a deputy and the two suspects were apprehended. A subsequent investigation resulted in additional criminal charges for sexual crimes.
2014- Citizen Patrollers recognized a "car prowl" suspect vehicle. The volunteers reported the vehicle and a deputy arrested the suspect.
2015- Citizen Patrollers reported that a vehicle was parked with an unresponsive man seated in the driver's seat at the Sandy River Delta. The driver attempted to escape from deputies and he was charged with DUII and other crimes.
2015- Citizen Patrollers observed an arson that was occurring at the base of Corbett Hill Road. A suspect fled as deputies arrived but the suspect was apprehended by deputies.
2015- A Citizen Patroller observed an area that had been routinely targeted by "car prowlers" in the Columbia River Gorge. During this time a suspect broke-out a car window and stole items. A deputy located and arrested two suspects.
2017- Citizen Patrollers noticed suspicious activity while conducting a premise check of an abandoned house. Deputies responded and found three "squatters" living inside the house with two dogs. Three stolen vehicles were also recovered from the property. One of the subjects had a warrant. The "squatters" had installed their own, new door and door locks.
2017- A Citizen Patroller noticed suspicious activity at an abandoned residence. Deputies responded and found that one squatter was in the residence. A stolen pickup and a pop-up camper were also recovered.
2017- A Citizen Patroller found a lost dog that had raced in the Alaskan Iditarod after several days of being separated from its owners.
2017- Citizen Patrollers organized and assisted with exhaustive door-to-door evacuation notices during the Eagle Creek Fire. They also assisted in door-to-door notifications in the aftermath of the fire when numerous homes in the Dodson-Warrendale area were threatened with landslides.
2018- A Citizen Patroller saw a man behaving suspiciously while parked near the Springdale School. A deputy contacted the man and found that he was likely spying an ex-girlfriend. The man was arrested on a warrant.