Conservators of the Peace

The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association (OSSA) Supports Sheriff John Hanlin

The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association (OSSA) supports Sheriff John Hanlin, his deputies and the entire community of Douglas County during this very difficult time. However, most importantly we support the victims of this tragic event.

The mission of OSSA is to support the Office of Sheriff in Oregon and to bring resources together in a time of need. In response to the incident at Umpqua Community College, Sheriffs from around the state pulled together to provide assistance, offers of resources and personnel from the inception of the incident and throughout the investigation.

We understand there is a great demand for immediate answers and change, but rushing an investigation or making snap judgments does a great disservice to the victims, their families, and the community as a whole. Members of the Roseburg Police Department, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Douglas County Fire agencies and many other supporting law enforcement agencies were the first responders on a very gruesome and horrific scene. Dedicated deputies, police officers and medical personnel have handled the situation with the utmost professionalism in the face of complete heartache. Sheriff Hanlin and the investigative team have made decisions based upon facts from the scene and with the advice of the many committed public safety partners that are assisting in the investigation.

We would like the victims’ families to know that we share in your grief. May God bless and comfort each one of you.

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2017 Oregon Sheriffs’ Annual Conference

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Message from the OSSA President

washington-pat-garrettAs the newly elected president, I am honored to represent all 36 Oregon sheriffs.

The sheriff has historically been the chief executive officer of the county, and this is still true under Oregon law. Elected by you and answering directly to the voters, your sheriff can be an effective voice of the people in the serious work of protecting the community. OSSA enables us to work together to serve you best.

By way of introduction, I am in my second term as the Washington County Sheriff, where deputies serve over a half million residents across 727 square miles of rural areas, urban communities, and cities. Our deputies also operate the only county jail. While Oregon counties are diverse in terms of climate, population, and economic drivers, your sheriffs work together to solve problems and challenges that we have in common.

The sheriffs of America have always played a significant role in the history of our nation; in fact, the office of Sheriff was the first county office established in the United States. Also, the first person to read the Declaration of Independence publicly was Philadelphia Sheriff John Nixon in Pennsylvania in 1776.

I look forward to working together to strengthen the office of Sheriff and the communities we proudly serve. Thank you for your continued support of the men and women on shift every day to keep our diverse and proud communities safe.


Pat Garrett
President and Washington County Sheriff.

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