By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes
From start to finish, Aug. 20 was a strange and busy day for the Keizer Police Department.
It all started around 8 a.m. when a member of the KPD’s Community Response Unit (CRU) spoke with Angelica Maria Rodriguez, 33, who had been living illegally in a residence at 4795 Verda Lane NE.
According to a release from the KPD, officers started getting complaints in January from neighbors regarding the residence, with complaints centering on damage to a neighboring fence, garbage piling up and numerous people coming and going at various hours. Officers determined the residence was in the foreclosure process and eventually became owned by Deutsche Bank.
Rodriguez was established as living at the house, even though no evidence could be found that she had ever owned or rented the house. A representative from Deutsche Bank informed a CRU officer that Rodriguez was not permitted to occupy the house.
In early August, when the CRU member went to the residence, Rodriguez refused to leave, citing “Occupy Portland” privileges. She refused to elaborate and only spoke through the closed front door.
On Aug. 20, a CRU officer was at the front door when Leon John Brown of Salem, 56, came upon the scene and engaged in a struggle with the officer. During the struggle, Rodriguez came out of the house and assisted Brown.
Both the officer and Brown were treated for minor abrasions. Brown and Rodriguez were both arrested and taken to the Marion County Correctional Facility.
Brown was charged with resisting arrest, assaulting a public safety officer, interfering with a peace officer, possession of methamphetamine and warrants for possession of meth and interfering with an officer. His bail was set at $180,000.
Rodriguez was arrested for resisting arrest, interfering with a peace officer, criminal trespass and three counts of endangering the welfare of a minor. Her bail was set at $60,000.
It was determined Rodriguez had children ages 13, 14 and 17 residing with her at the residence, with the children released to a relative. Marion County Dog Control took custody of a dog in the house.
CRU officers obtained a search warrant and went through the residence, obtaining evidence of trespass, criminal mischief, user amounts of methamphetamine and methamphetamine smoking devices. Investigators found filthy, cluttered and unsafe living conditions.
Late in the afternoon, KPD officers received several unusual calls in the span of several minutes: a driver who crashed into a ditch, a driver run over by his own vehicle when he got out and didn’t realize the vehicle was still in gear and a grass fire.