Lincoln Co. Sheriff's Office
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News Releases
Tip of the Week for February 26, 2024 - Data Privacy (Photo) - 02/22/24


Unfortunately, every year thousands of Oregonians fall victim to online criminals who disguise themselves as established organizations or businesses. Internet scams continue to evolve and become harder to recognize. The term cyber-criminal generally refers to someone using internet services or software to take advantage of victims. Cyber-criminals and other scammers have become quite skilled in getting you to provide your personal information in a variety of ways. Some scammers are selling “official merchandise” while others ask you to pay fees urgently to avoid serious consequences (which are not real). Another popular scam is the click-bait link or file attachment that collects your data by inviting you to open it from a message such as “I think you know this person that was in this car accident” or “Your account has been suspended, click here to reset your password”. But of course, when you click these links you get viruses or are directed to give your personal information to “reset your account” or login. When in doubt don’t open the link, instead open a new browser and pull up the organization’s official website or call their official number. 

Here are a few tips to keep you safer from scams and cybercrimes:

  • Use caution, especially with those you are not familiar with.
    • When you receive uninvited contacts from people or businesses, whether it's over the phone, by mail, email, in person, or on social media, always consider the possibility that the interaction may be a scam. 
    • Remember to call or log on to the organization’s real website to verify the information you’ve been given is accurate. 
  • Protect your passwords and personal information.
    • Always use password protection.
    • Don’t share account or password information with others.
    • Update security software and back up content regularly. 
    • Protect your WiFi network with a password.
    • Avoid using public computers or WiFi hotspots to access online banking or to provide personal information for services.
  • Ignore unfamiliar attachments or links. 
    • Don’t click on links, open attachments, attempt to unsubscribe, or call any telephone number listed in suspicious messages. 
    • Do NOT give any money, credit card info, or other personal details.
    • When in doubt, look up the organization’s website or phone number and contact them directly. 

If you have information about or have fallen victim to a scam, please contact the Oregon Attorney General's Consumer Hotline at 1-877-877-9392 or online at

For more information and tips visit our website at and like us on Facebook at Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office – Oregon. 



Photo of Dog
Photo of Dog
Siletz Abandoned Dogs, Suspect Arrested (Photo) - 02/20/24

02/14/2024 - Siletz, OR

On February 14, 2024, at around 4PM a Siletz resident reported to Lincoln County Sheriff’s Deputies that two dogs were abandoned at her home in the 200 block of SW Molalla Street in Siletz, Oregon. The dogs were a male Siberian Husky and a female Rottweiler. Animal Services Deputy Martin began an investigation and obtained security camera footage of a suspect tying one of the dogs to the residence. The same suspect returned later with the second dog which was left in the middle of the street in front of the residence.

During follow-up investigation, Deputy Martin located the suspect, identified as 42 year old Cheryl Hamel-Fox, of Siletz, OR. Hamel-Fox claimed she was told it was okay to leave the dogs at the location. Animal Services Deputy Martin recovered the dogs, who were housed at the Lincoln County Animal Shelter. Hamel-Fox was arrested for two counts of misdemeanor Animal Abandonment.

Pictured are Blaze, the Siberian Husky and Ossa, the Rottweiler.

Attached Media Files: Media Release , Photo of Dog , Photo of Dog
Tip of the Week for February 19, 2024 - Pet Licensing (Photo) - 02/15/24



Pet ownership comes with many responsibilities to keep you, your pet, and your community safe. Lincoln County requires all dogs hold a valid license pursuant to ORS 609.100. Cat licenses are optional but are encouraged because they can help reunite you with your cat if they are lost.  

In addition to being required by law, licensing your dog can save their life and speed up the process of returning them to you. One of Lincoln County Animal Shelter’s goals is to be able to reunite all lost pets with their families. You can help us reach that goal with licensing your pets. When Good Samaritans find stray dogs that are licensed, they can call the Lincoln County Animal Shelter or connect to DocuPet, a 24/7 licensing and HomeSafe partner, to find your information. With a current license, your pet may not have to come to the shelter to be reunited with you. 

If happy reunions are not enough motivation, failure to obtain a dog license can result in a $265 fine. All dogs in the county are required to be licensed within thirty days of residence. This is a requirement regardless of where you live in Lincoln County and whether your dog leaves your property or not. While cat licenses are not required, they help the animal shelter reunite families with their feline friends. 

You may easily purchase or renew a license by mail, over the phone, at the Animal Shelter, or online. Applications and additional information are available online at:

Why licensing is important:


  • License tags allow us to contact you as soon as possible. This provides peace of mind, leaves space at the shelter for other animals in need, and saves tax-payer money.
  • License fees support shelter programs and operations which provide over 1,000 animals with food, veterinary care, shelter, training, behavior enrichment, and adoption services each year.
  • License fees support field services and investigations which address loose pets, aggressive dogs, and bite reports.
  • License fees allow Animal Services to investigate, seize, and care for animals who are victims of cruelty and neglect.
  • License fees support our pet retention programs which help people keep their pets. This includes the distribution of over 1,000 pounds of pet food through Meals on Wheels each month.
  • If your animal is found injured and wearing its license, it is much easier for us to obtain emergency medical attention for them and to contact you with the details.
  • Identification is critically important for your pet in the event of a disaster.
  • If your dog is impounded, current on their license, and spayed or neutered, the first $30 impound fee is waived.
  • License fees are an important way the community supports our policy of not euthanizing for time or space. These fees also support finding new homes for as many animals as possible.

Please keep your pets safe with a license, ID tag, and microchip. Remember to search for your lost pet at the Lincoln County Animal Shelter at 510 NE Harney St. in Newport and by calling 541-265-0720. You can help reunite lost pets by following the Animal Shelter’s Facebook page at LincolnCountyLostandFoundPets.

For more information and tips visit our website at and like us on Facebook at Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office – Oregon. 


Tip of the Week for February 12, 2024 - Natural Gas Safety (Photo) - 02/08/24


Natural gas is often used in commercial and residential settings. Some uses include heating homes or powering appliances such as stoves and grills. In some areas, natural gas is piped directly into homes similar to water and electricity. Some households also use generators or other natural gas-powered appliances during power outages or emergencies. As with any plumbing system, leaks can happen but there are some ways to keep you safer if you use natural gas at home or at work. 

In its original state, natural gas is odorless, colorless, and extremely flammable. Gas companies add a chemical called mercaptan, or methanethiol, to make natural gas smell like rotten eggs. If it smelled like fresh baked cookies, that gas leak may not alert you to the problem, but instead leave you looking for dessert when you should be evacuating the building.  Natural gas can displace the air in a confined space which can cause headaches, nausea, carbon monoxide poisoning, and/or suffocation.

If you hear or smell a natural gas leak, there are some steps you should take:

  • Do not use your cell phone, landline telephone, or other electronic devices.
  • Do not light matches, use lighters, or generate any sparks.
  • Do not use any electrical switches, even turning the lights off could create a spark inside the switch.
  • Evacuate everyone from the area.
  • Call 911 from a phone in another area or building away from the leak.
  • Contact your natural gas provider.

If you smell natural gas or hear the hissing sound of a gas leak, it’s always safest to leave the area immediately and contact your gas company. After a natural disaster, such as an earthquake, it could be several days or longer before they are able to reach your home. Do not turn off your natural gas unless you smell gas, hear the sound of gas escaping, or see other signs of a leak. Only turn it off if it is safe to do so.

Always have an emergency plan, evacuation meeting point, and ensure all household members know what to do if there is a gas leak. Check with your natural gas service provider to see if they have additional safety information and resources. 

For more information and tips visit our website at and like us on Facebook at Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office – Oregon. 


Tip of the Week for February 5, 2024 - Celebrate Super Bowl and Seafood and Wine Safely (Photo) - 02/01/24


It’s almost that time of year again when football fans gather for Super Bowl Sunday and Seafood and Wine attendees trickle into town. When you think of drunk driving, it’s easy to think about the financial impact: fines, legal fees, and criminal charges are no joke and can seriously affect your future. But there are additional consequences that impact our communities in other ways. 

Drivers that get DUIs (a driving under the influence citation) are the lucky ones. Most of us know someone that has been killed or injured by an impaired driver or we know someone that made the wrong choice and was the drunk driver. During football season, special events, and throughout the year, we urge you to make the right choice and not to drive after drinking. 

If you are drinking, have a plan to keep yourself and your community safe. Have a designated driver, use a taxi, or alternate transportation. Friends also play a large role in keeping each other safe. Encourage those around you not to drive after drinking and when possible, help them find a safe way home. 

If you didn’t plan on drinking but find yourself drinking in the moment, do not drive home, find a safe alternative instead. But you really need your car for work in the morning and you’re “just a little buzzed?”. Buzzed driving is drunk driving. You may get hit with large fines, lose your car and your job due to court dates and a DUI charge on your record, and you may kill someone or yourself if you are in a crash. Don’t be the reason someone doesn’t make it home. Don’t drive after drinking. 

For more information and tips visit our website at and like us on Facebook at Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office – Oregon. 


Lincoln County Sheriff announces he will not seek re-election for 2025 - 01/31/24

It is with very mixed emotions that I share my decision not to seek re-election for the position of Sheriff in the upcoming term, which will begin on January 6, 2025. Serving in the Sheriff’s Office for 36 years, and as Sheriff for the past 7 years has been an incredible journey, and I am grateful for the support and trust you've placed in me. After much consideration, it is the right time for our agency and for me personally. 

I believe it is time for a new leader to guide our Sheriff’s Office forward and build upon the foundation we’ve laid. I am pleased to announce my full support for Lieutenant Adam Shanks as the ideal candidate to succeed me as Sheriff.

Lieutenant Shanks has been an invaluable member of our Sheriff’s Office team, demonstrating unwavering dedication, leadership, and a deep commitment to the well-being of our community. His experience, integrity, and passion for public service make him well-suited to take on the responsibilities of Sheriff.

As we navigate this transition, I have full confidence in the capable hands of the dedicated individuals who make up your Sheriff’s Office.  I would like to express my true appreciation to the outstanding work they do to keep you safe.  I am committed to working closely with the team to ensure a smooth transition and to provide any support needed over the next 11 months. 

I want to express my deep thanks for the trust and support our citizens have shown me throughout my time as Sheriff. I am humbled and honored to serve you, and I look forward to seeing our community continue to flourish under new leadership.