SHPD Commended for Valor at State Capitol

Kristy Tallman

The Sweet Home Police Department (SHPD) stood tall in the spotlight of statewide recognition on Feb. 20, as esteemed senators gathered at the capitol to applaud their recent collaborative efforts with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in averting a potential catastrophe targeting law enforcement officials and civilians alike.

Chief Jason Ogden, Captain Ryan Cummings, and Detective Sean Potter were honored on the senate floor last Tuesday. This recognition was graciously presented by Sen. Cedrick Hayden.

“I’m deeply moved by the selflessness exhibited by the brave individuals in our community who unflinchingly shield others from harm,” Senator Hayden said. “The unwavering resolve and swift action demonstrated by our law enforcement officers, without regard for personal safety, undoubtedly averted what could have been a tragic event.

“Our state and county law enforcement personnel are the unsung heroes of our society. Day in and day out, they put their lives on the line to safeguard our families and communities. It is imperative that we not only recognize but also honor their dedication and sacrifice.”

The event also saw the presence of Mayor Susan Coleman, City Manager Kelcey Young, and City Council Member Angelita Sanchez.

Mayor Coleman expressed her admiration for the SHPD.

“Our community takes great pride in the exceptional quality of our police department,” she said. “The swift and adept response of our officers in defusing the situation underscores their professionalism and competence. What stood out to me the most was that the AR-15 recovered in the vehicle was loaded. This highlights their skill in de-escalating a situation since it was resolved without incident.

“Sweet Home consistently supports our PD because we are a close community who understands the vital role our officers play in keeping the peace in our town. We also are aware of the risks they and their families take when they put on the uniform and step into dangerous situations. We value this sacrifice they make daily for their neighbors and friends. We are grateful for all that they do for Sweet Home.

“This arrest was recognized by many because there have been so many situations that have ended tragically. People could be mourning the loss of life right now, but because of their excellent police work, we can celebrate a day without tragedy.”

The unfolding of events leading to the arrest of Ryan Carbon, 40, of Sweet Home, began when an individual alerted the FBI on Jan. 4 regarding purported threats of violence directed towards the Eugene Police Department (EPD) and others in Lebanon’s vicinity. Subsequently, the FBI notified SHPD, prompting an immediate investigation.

The pivotal moment arrived when Det. Potter received a crucial phone call from an FBI field agent in Eugene on Jan. 4, disclosing Carbon’s explicit threats. Acting swiftly, Potter orchestrated surveillance and collaborated with patrol officers, culminating in a traffic stop that led to Carbon’s apprehension. Carbon was found in possession of firearms, including a stolen shotgun and a loaded AR-15.

SHPD’s proactive measures led to Carbon’s arrest as he attempted to leave the Sweet Home city limits for Lebanon, charged with driving under the influence of intoxicants. Additional charges included unlawful possession of a firearm, with SHPD seizing eight firearms from Carbon’s vehicle, including a confirmed stolen shotgun and a significant cache of ammunition. An extreme risk protection order for Carbon was also secured.

Det. Potter said that Carbon’s arrest was warranted not only due to firearm possession but also the credible threat he posed.

Young applauded the bravery and professionalism exhibited by SHPD.

“Their unwavering courage and dedication from inception to resolution are commendable,” she said. “Achieving such a feat is a testament to the exceptional caliber of our officers. Chief Ogden and Captain Cummings displayed exemplary leadership, and Detective Potter’s tireless commitment, even on his day off, is truly commendable. Our entire team epitomizes bravery and diligence.

“I feel so incredibly humbled and honored to even know these officers, let alone to get to work with them. It also makes me feel safer to live here and raise my family here knowing that we have such an incredible police force.”

The SHPD expressed profound gratitude for the community’s unwavering support and the recognition bestowed upon them.

“The outpouring of support from Mayor Coleman, Councilor Sanchez, City Manager Young, Senator Hayden, and the entire Senate is immensely heartening for all of us at the police department,” Chief Ogden stated. “It serves as a powerful affirmation of the impact of our work and the positive difference we strive to make in our community and beyond.”

Mayor Coleman echoed the sentiments, underscoring the close-knit bond between Sweet Home and its police department.

“Our community stands firmly behind our PD, recognizing the pivotal role they play in preserving peace and security,” Coleman said. “We deeply appreciate the sacrifices they and their families make daily, ensuring the safety of our neighbors and friends. Sweet Home is profoundly grateful for their unwavering dedication.”

“Standing alongside my fellow officers on the senate floor was a moment of immense pride and gratitude,” Chief Ogden reflected. “The acknowledgment and appreciation from both our local community and lawmakers serve as a powerful reminder of the profound impact law enforcement has on the lives of individuals. It’s a memory I will cherish, a testament to our collective efforts.

“Working with and leading such a great team is an honor and a privilege. I am incredibly proud of their hard work and persistence during this investigation. It truly was a team effort. Their dedication to keeping our community safe, as well as looking out for others, shines the brightest in investigations like this. I’m deeply thankful for our team and their unwavering commitment.”