Media Board

Recent media releases from the Benton County Sheriff's Office are listed below. To read past media releases, go to the "Supporting Documents" section of this web page.

Sheriff's Line Do Not Cross

Multi-Agency Active Threat Training Successful

On June 22, 2019, from 10:00am to 1:00pm, the Benton County Sheriff’s Office held an active threat response training exercise at the Crescent Valley High School in Corvallis, Oregon.

The Sheriff’s Office goals of the training were to successfully simulate saving the lives of students and faculty members, protecting their own lives, and stopping the threat.

With approximately 200 participants, the training drill was a successful collaboration among law enforcement, fire and the Corvallis School District.

Positive outcomes from the exercise include familiarity with the layout of the school, and coordination with multiple agency response.

A significant lesson learned was radio coverage was not sufficient for the rural area of the school. The exercise began with four channels available for use, and ended the drill with two, due to transmission problems.

The Benton County Sheriff’s Office thanks the Philomath Police Department, Philomath Fire Department, Corvallis Police Department, Corvallis Fire Department, Albany Police Department, Benton County Sheriff’s Office volunteer groups, and Public Information Officers in the county, for their assistance to make this training exercise a success.

Sheriff's Star

Dead Body in Willamette River

On June 12, 2019, at 12:49 pm, the Albany Police Department was advised of a dead body floating in the Willamette River near Takena Landing. After the retrieval and the securing of the body, Benton County Sheriff’s Office was established as the investigating agency.

On June 13, 2019, Detectives with the Benton County Sheriff’s Office attended an autopsy at the State of Oregon Medical Examiner’s Office.

Preliminary results of the autopsy indicate that the body was a white male, undetermined age, and had been in the Willamette River for two to three months, making a visual identification difficult. The male had been wearing a “Batman” T-shirt and an Oregon State University shirt. An indistinguishable tattoo was visible on the lower right area of the abdomen.

Initial examination of the body does not indicate obvious signs of trauma and the death does not appear to have been caused by observable homicidal violence. Toxicology results are pending but the results are not expected for several weeks or longer.

Benton County Sheriff’s Office is investigating missing person’s reports but have no immediate leads as to the identity of the male.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Lt. Chris Duffitt of the Benton County Sheriff’s Office at 541.766.6858.

Sheriff's Star

Traffic Fatality

On May 3, 2019 at 8:00am, deputies from the Benton County Sheriff’s Office responded to a head-on collision on Highway 20 at Hwy 223, west of Philomath. Catherine Koch, 37, of Depoe Bay, Oregon, was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Koch was traveling easttbound on Highway 20, when she collided with a loaded dump truck, headed westtbound. The truck was loaded with dirt and towing a trailer also loaded with dirt. The truck is owned by Riverbend Material Company of Oregon

The driver of the truck was David Clark, 60-year-old male from Albany, Oregon. There is no indication of alcohol or drugs as being a factor in the crash.

Highway 20 was closed for 4.5 hours while the Benton County Sheriff’s Office Crash Team investigated the incident. 

Anyone who witnessed the incident is encouraged to contact Deputy Seirup at 541-766-6858 or email doug.seirup@co.benton.or.us.