Six Detectives, two Detective Sergeants, and a Property Specialist are assigned to the Detective Unit. The Detective Unit is responsible for criminal investigations, which includes a position with the Rogue Area Drug Enforcement (RADE) Team, an inter-agency drug enforcement team.
Detectives are responsible for ongoing investigations that require specialized training, multiple witness and/or victim interviews, and interaction with multiple agencies. While all uniformed police officers conduct complete investigations as often as possible, many cases must be forwarded to detectives due to their complexity or severity.
Cases that meet the following criteria, that involve extensive follow-up, that may involve people living outside the city limits, or that may require special training such as child abuse and homicides are investigated by detectives. Detectives typically carry 20 or more cases at any given time.
Case Assignment Criteria
The Detective Sergeant is responsible for reviewing all cases referred to the Detectives for assignment. Considerations for assignment include:
- Seriousness of the crime
- Is there a named suspect
- Can the suspect be identified
- Can the suspect be located
- Can the suspect vehicle be identified
- Is there physical evidence present
- Are there witnesses
Generally the types of cases that meet the criteria include robberies, homicides, sex crimes, child abuse, fraud, burglary, assaults, theft, missing persons and other felonies. After hours, the on-call detective responds to serious crimes needing immediate attention.
The Grants Pass Department of Public Safety also has an interagency agreement with the Josephine County Sheriff 's Office, the Josephine County District Attorney's Office, and the Oregon State Police establishing a major crimes response team. The team can be called out during any major crimes incident when due to the extensive or serious nature of the crime additional resources are needed, such as homicide, arson, kidnapping, assault, officer involved shootings, etc.
The detectives assigned to the unit participate in several interagency activities to include, but not be limited to:
- RADE - One detective is assigned to the unit that investigates narcotics related crimes occurring in Grants Pass and Josephine County.
- Missing People - Officers take missing people cases frequently. Most of these cases are resolved within a few hours to a few days. At times, people go missing for years at a time. These cases can be very difficult to solve. The Detectives utilize volunteers who are retired Detectives from other jurisdictions to help investigate each missing person case. These "Cold Case Detectives" review each case periodically and follow up on tips provided by the public.
- Child Abuse Multidisciplinary Team - Detectives participate as part of a team that attends weekly meetings at the Child Advocacy and Treatment Center to present and discuss child abuse crimes occurring in Grants Pass and Josephine County.
Information Search Assistance
Many other agreements made with the Oregon Department of Justice and other governmental agencies relate to information databases and access. A Detectives Division Investigative Specialist is assigned to provide assistance in computerized searches, investigation, transcription, tracking, crime analysis, crime mapping, collection and dissemination of crime information, photo-line-ups, and phone calls.
A Property Specialist is assigned to store and maintain control of evidence. The Property Specialist performs all activities related to property and evidence from processing, inventory, court and lab requests to return or destruction of, adjudicated evidence.