Bend Police Dept.
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News Releases
Chief Mike Krantz's Statement on the March 20, 2024 Officer-Involved Shooting - 04/05/24

Chief Mike Krantz’s Statement on the March 20, 2024 Officer-Involved Shooting

I would like to extend my gratitude to the Tri-County Major Incident Team and the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, who, on March 20, 2024, led a rapid, transparent, and thorough investigation into an incident in which a Bend Police Officer used deadly force during an encounter with a member of our community. I also want to recognize the thorough and fair review of this investigation by the Deschutes County District Attorney's Office. The District Attorney's careful examination of the facts of this incident ensures that the process is fair and just for all involved. These agencies' commitment to justice and transparency is invaluable during events that have such a profound impact on those involved, as well as on our community.  

As with any loss of life, this incident has a devastating impact on Mr. Platz's family and friends. It will also have a life-changing impact on the police officers involved in this incident, on our Police Department, and on the community we serve. 

The use of deadly force is the most difficult and challenging decision a police officer will ever face in a career of protecting and serving the community. These decisions are made under incredibly challenging and stressful circumstances and often must be made in a split second. In this instance, Mr. Platz took his own life. At the same time, Officer Wes Murphy recognized a threat to himself as well as other police officers and community members and was found to be justified in his actions. 

The completion of the District Attorney's Office review brings to a close the criminal investigation required following these types of incidents. The Bend Police Department will now conduct an administrative review, which aims to assess whether officers adhered to department policies and procedures during the incident. 

While much of our Department's training focuses on reducing officers' reliance on force, our officers know that they will sometimes be faced with circumstances out of their control. As a learning agency, we will use the review to determine if departmentwide training or new equipment could make these instances even more rare. 

The Bend Police Department has a strong relationship of trust with our community, and force incidents involving police departments often impact those relationships. The Bend Police Department's commitment to serve and protect our community is unwavering, as is our commitment to fostering transparency and accountability while keeping our community's trust. 

My thoughts are with everyone affected by this incident, and I remain steadfast in ensuring our entire community knows that the Bend Police Department is committed to upholding their safety and well-being. 

The Bend Police Department encourages anyone who is experiencing a mental health crisis or knows of someone who may be experiencing a mental health crisis to call 988 or contact Deschutes County Behavioral Health at 541-322-7500 for assistance or referral to resources. 

One arrested after altercation results in burned trailer, stolen dog - 04/04/24

Date: April 4, 2024

Case #: 2024-00018082

Incident: One arrested after altercation that results in burned trailer, stolen dog 

Date / Time of Incident: April 4, 2024 / 3:05 a.m. 

Location: Scandia Village RV Park, 700 block of NE Ross Road, Bend

Arrested: Edward Rene Bales, 54-year-old Bend resident
Offense: DUII

Arrested: Austin Jordan Stapleton, 26-year-old Bend resident 
Offenses: DUII, Assault IV, Arson I, Robbery III, Theft I and Burglary I

At 3:05 a.m. on Thursday, April 4, Bend Police officers responded to a report of a hazard at NE Third Street and Franklin Avenue. When officers arrived, they found 54-year-old Edward Rene Bales in a gray Dodge Ram 1500, blocking both northbound lanes of Third Street. 

An investigation determined that Bales and 26-year-old Austin Jordan Stapleton had been drinking together over the course of several hours, first in Redmond and then in Bend. While driving back to Bales’ home in the 700 block of NE Ross Road, the pair got into a physical altercation. Stapleton punched Bales in the face, took his house keys, and left on foot. Bales was taken into custody on suspicion of DUII, and officers attempted to locate Stapleton.

While Bales was in police custody and being processed for the DUII, Bend Police and Bend Fire were dispatched at approximately 4:47 a.m. to a report of an RV on fire in the Scandia Village RV Park. When officers arrived, they found Bales’ fifth-wheel trailer fully engulfed and threatening a neighboring trailer. Bend Fire was able to extinguish the fire and prevent damage to other structures. Bend Fire and Bend Police investigated the fire as arson. 

About a half hour later, at approximately 5:12 a.m., Deschutes County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of a DUII in the 51300 block of U.S. Highway 97 in La Pine. Responding deputies contacted Stapleton, who was driving a green GMC Yukon, and took him into custody on suspicion of DUII. Bales’ dog, Mojo, was in Stapleton’s vehicle at the time of the traffic stop. 

Stapleton was arrested by Bend Police on suspicion of DUII, fourth-degree assault, first-degree arson, third-degree robbery, first-degree theft and first-degree burglary. He was lodged at the Deschutes County Jail. 

Fatal Motor Vehicle Crash Investigation - 03/27/24

The Bend Police Department and Oregon State Police are currently investigating a fatal motor vehicle accident that occurred in the southbound lanes of the Parkway (Hwy 97) at Reed Market (Exit 139). The Parkway will be closed for an extended period. Please avoid the area. Detours are in place. 

Bend Police investigating burglary at Macy's - 03/26/24

Date: March 26, 2024

Case #: 2024-00016396

Incident: Bend Police investigating burglary at Macy’s 

Date / Time of Incident: March 26, 2024 / 5:30 a.m. 

Location: Macy’s, 3188 N Highway 97, Bend

At approximately 5:30 a.m. on Tuesday, March 26, Bend Police responded to a report of a burglary at Macy’s in the Bend River Promenade. 

An employee who received an alarm notification conducted a walk-through of the store and called Deschutes County 911 Dispatch to report the store appeared to have been burglarized. 

Officers found evidence of a forced entry on the east side of the building, with damage to the doors. Officers, including K9 Pluto and his handler, searched the building and found no one inside. 

In the store, police found 12 cash registers broken into with approximately $4,000 in cash removed. 

The investigation is ongoing. 

One arrested after victim reaches out to National Human Trafficking Hotline - 03/25/24

Date: March 25, 2024

Case #: 2024-00015438

Incident: One arrested after victim reaches out to National Human Trafficking Hotline

Date / Time of Incident: March 21, 2024 / 2:16 a.m. 

Location: Red Lion Inn & Suites, 15 NE Butler Market Road, Bend

Arrested: Orlando S. Smith, 33-year-old Vancouver, Wash., resident

Offenses: Assault IV, Promoting Prostitution, Out-of-county warrant

At approximately 2:16 a.m. on Thursday, March 21, Bend Police responded to a report of a possible sex crime and human trafficking.

According to Deschutes County 911 Dispatch, a 31-year-old Salem woman texted the National Human Trafficking Hotline to report that she was being forced to engage in commercial sex acts and was being held against her will in a room at the Red Lion Inn & Suites on NE Butler Market Road.  

After multiple attempts to contact the victim went unanswered, officers knocked and announced themselves, ordering those inside to open the door. When the victim answered the door, officers evacuated the victim and took the suspect, identified as 33-year-old Vancouver, Wash., resident Orlando Smith, into custody. 

During a later interview with the victim, she told police that Smith had punched her in the face multiple times and forced her to engage in sex acts with multiple men over the course of two days. Officers located an online ad for the victim, as well as more than $1,000 in Smith’s possession. 

Smith was arrested on suspicion of fourth-degree assault and promoting prostitution, and was cited for a warrant involving a traffic offense in Salem. He was lodged at the Deschutes County Jail. 

If you or someone you know is involved in a trafficking situation, you can call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888, or text 233733. Advocates are available 24/7 to take reports of potential human trafficking.