News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

Auto theft tops list of felonies prosecuted by Linn County

Linn County Communications Officer

By Alex Paul
Linn County Communications Officer

For the first time since Doug Marteeny became Linn County District Attorney in 2013, criminal offenses associated with methamphetamine and heroin were not at the top of a list of felonies and misdemeanors prosecuted by his 13 attorneys.

But that isn’t because the use of illicit drugs in the county has gone down, Marteeny said, it’s because Oregon voters passed a law in 2020 that made most crimes associated with the possession of small amounts of heroin and meth violations.

“The biggest change we saw was due to the legalization of hard drugs,” Marteeny said. “The only way to correct that is up to the voters. We are masters of our own destiny. If voters want to see change, they can make it happen through the initiative process.”

“Unauthorized use of a vehicle is usually always in the top 10, usually in the top five,” Marteeny said.

Marteeny said Honda cars and Ford pickups are usually among the favorite brands and they are often taken to the Portland area, where they are sold or chopped up for parts.

Marteeny said that since Oregonians legalized marijuana use and production, the state has seen a significant increase in illegal industrial growing operations.

Criminal organizations tell farmers they want to lease the ground to grow hemp and then develop marijuana operations worked by illegal labors which can include human trafficking,” Marteeny said. “They send their products to other states and leave behind an environmental mess. Plus, marijuana uses a lot of water to grow.”

Marteeny said law enforcement officers are experiencing more crimes against them.

He said crimes against officers are up for the fifth year in a row.

Top 10 Felonies

1. Unauthorized use of a vehicle – 101

2. Theft – 1st degree – 97

3. Unauthorized use of a weapon – 92

4. Identify theft – 80

5. Encouraging child sex abuse – 

1st degree – 75

6. Felon in possession of a firearm – 74

7. Unlawful manufacture of 

marijuana – 66

8. Attempting to edlude a police officer – 63

9. Strangulation – 54

10. Sex Abuse – 1st Degree – 51

Top 10 Misdemeanors

1. DUII – 321

2. Reckless driving – 303

3. Failure to appear on citation – 180

4. Assault – 4th degree – 179

5. Reckless endangerment – 177

6. Criminal mischief – 2nd degree – 142

7. Harassment – 124

8. Menacing – 115

9. Criminal trespass – 2nd degree – 98

10. Driving while suspended – 79

Previous Article

Comments sought for 2023 state forest activities

Next Article

Detroit Dam roadway opens after construction

You might be interested in …

Mill City Planning Commission seeks two members

The City of Mill City has two vacancies on the Mill City Planning Commission, as of June 30. Interested residents must submit an application outlining their interest in the position by May 13.  The basic […]

Upcoming worship night features Kelly Minter

Mid-Valley Women of Christ has announced that Kelly Minter, author, speaker, and musician, will be the speaker for its upcoming valley-wide Praise & Worship Night on March 17.  The event will take place at LIFE […]