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The City of Portland, Oregon

Police Bureau

Sworn to protect. Dedicated to serve.

Phone: 503-823-0000

Non-Emergency: 503-823-3333

1111 S.W. 2nd Avenue, Portland, OR 97204

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Introduction to Calls for Service

Calls for service statistics are used to indicate the level of police activity in a defined area during a specific timeframe. Calls for service can be divided between dispatched calls and self-initiated/directed calls.  Dispatched calls are calls for police assistance that are generated by the community, through a call or text to 911 or the non-emergency line (503-823-3333).  Self-initiated and directed calls are officer-initiated calls for service, which can be initiated in-person or scheduled in advance to proactively address a community issue.  The Portland Police Bureau counts all calls for service where at least one Portland Police officer was dispatched or self-initiated a call.  The calls are primarily dispatched to locations within the City of Portland but also include calls where an officer assisted another agency, however calls outside of Portland's jurisdiction are excluded.  The Portland Police Bureau’s calls for service statistics focus on total police response and differ from the numbers provided by the Bureau of Emergency Communications (BOEC).

Call Priority Level

When a call for service is received by a dispatcher at BOEC, it is assigned a priority level based on the severity of the incident and is used to prioritize the police response. A call for service can be escalated to a higher priority before being cleared if the nature of the incident changes and more police units are necessary.

Priority Level Definition
High In-progress events where persons or high-value property are in immediate danger. Requires a multiple unit response.
Medium In-progress events without an immediate danger to persons or property. Multiple units may be necessary for these calls.
Low Events that may no longer be in-progress, so immediate response is not as urgent. Generally requires a single unit.

Call Groups

Each call for service is assigned a call type by the dispatcher based on the preliminary nature of the call. The Dispatched Calls for Service Dashboard presents statistics and information about the final call type of incidents in the City of Portland. Call types are assigned based on the initial circumstances presented to the dispatcher and may not be a reflection of the full nature of the call. The call types are categorized into one of eight call groups for reporting purposes. These generalized groupings are intended to simplify analysis. Definitions of call types are presented in the table below.

Please note that calls in all groupings, not just the "Crime" group, can result in a reported crime. Call types in the "Crime" grouping generally describe a reportable offense, but do not always resulted in a reported crime. Calls in the "Civil" grouping are generally related to non-criminal matters, but can also result in a reported crime. Call types in the "Disorder" grouping can be used to describe events that are not easy to categorize as criminal or civil based on the call data alone. These call types may not be descriptive of the potential type of crime, but rather a description of the location (e.g. "School Incident", "TriMet"), people involved (e.g. "Juvenile Problem"), or situation that may or may not be related to crime (e.g. "Suspicious", "Disturbance", "Unwanted Person"). All additional call groupings may also result in a reported crime.

The final call type is categorized into one of eight call groups for reporting purposes:

Call Grouping Call Categories  Definition
Alarm Calls initiated by the activation of an audible, silent, duress, and/or monitored alarm of a vehicle, residence, business, or other premise. Only contains a single call category.
Assist Calls to provide assistance to medical or fire first-responders and other partner agencies.
   Assist Calls to provide assistance to partner agencies, including Portland Fire and Rescue, American Medical Response (AMR), and other law-enforcement agencies.
Warrant Calls to assist in the service of a warrant.
Civil Calls related to non-criminal matters where police presence is requested to ensure the situation does not escalate.
    Behavioral Calls related to behavioral health, including crisis response, suicide attempts or threats, and transports to detox.
Civil Calls related to private disputes where police presence may be necessary to ensure the safety of involved parties, including child custody issues, evictions, service of papers, etc.
Missing Persons Calls to take reports of missing or endangered persons.
Community Policing Contacts with the community, such as dropping off food baskets and attending school events and community meetings. Only contains a single call category.
Crime Calls related to activity that may be defined as criminal.
                  Abuse Calls related to the act of willful harm to a child, elderly person, or a person who is mentally and/or physically incapacitated. Includes instances of abandonment and neglect.
Arson Calls related to the deliberate setting of a fire.
Assault Calls related to the unlawful attack by one person upon another. Includes stabbings, shootings, and other types of assault.
Burglary Calls related to the unlawful entry into a building or other structure with the intent to commit a theft. Includes residential and commercial burglaries.
Domestic Violence Calls related to disturbances or assaults involving adult members of a domestic relationship.
Escape/Pursuit Calls related to subjects who have escaped custody or the pursuit of a subject avoiding custody.
Fraud Calls related to the use of deceit to induce an entity to part with something of value or to surrender a legal right.
Harassment Calls related to reports of being the subject of ongoing unwanted contacts.
Kidnap Calls related to the unlawful seizure, transportation, and/or detention of a person against their will or of a minor without the consent of their custodial parent(s) or legal guardian.
Restraining Order Violation Calls related to a person not following the conditions of a valid court order to not have contact with parties.
Robbery Calls related to the taking or attempt to take anything of value from the control, custody, or care of another person by force or intimidation.
Sex Offense Calls related to any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent or reports of unlawful, non-forcible sexual intercourse.
Stolen Vehicle Calls related to the theft of a motor vehicle.
Theft Calls related to the unlawful taking of property from the possession of another entity.
Threat Calls related to the placing of another person in reasonable fear of bodily harm through the use of words or other conduct.
Vandalism Calls related to the willful or malicious destruction, damage, defacement, or otherwise injury of real or personal property without the consent of the owner or the person having custody or control of it.
Vice Calls related to drug/narcotic violations, liquor law violations, illegal gambling, and/or prostitution.
Disorder Calls related to disturbances or other problems that require a police response to assess and resolve the situation.
                Animal Problem Calls related to animals that are either in danger or pose an immediate threat to the public.
Area/ Premise Check Calls related to requests to check a specific location for potential problems or to make sure the site is secure.
Disorder Calls related to generalized disorder.
Disturbance Calls related to non-specific reports of a threat to public peace or safety.
Fireworks Calls related to illegal, hazardous, or noisy fireworks.
Illegal Dumping Calls related to trash.
Juvenile Problem Calls related to disturbances that specifically involve juveniles.
Parking Problem Calls related to illegal or hazardous parking.
School Incident Calls related to disturbances involving students or occurring at a school.
Shots Fired Calls related to reports of hearing gun shots with no indication of a victim.
Subject Stop Calls related to contacts with persons of interest.
Suspicious Calls related to reports of suspicious persons, vehicles, or circumstances.
TriMet Calls related to public transportation.
Unwanted Person Calls related to subjects refusing to leave a location when asked.
Welfare Check Calls related to requests to check on the health or safety of a subject.
Traffic Calls related to motor vehicle traffic including collisions, road hazards, and impaired drivers.
  Collision Calls related to reports of traffic collisions.
DUII Calls related to reports of a driver under the influence of intoxicants.
Hazard Calls related to an object or condition that is a danger to traffic safety.
Traffic Stop Calls related to the enforcement of traffic laws.
Other Calls that do not fall under other categories. Includes follow-up activities for prior calls and events and administrative activities.
  Admin Calls related to administrative tasks.
Follow Up Activities where an officer, detective, or other Bureau member is following-up a prior call, incident, or event.
Other Incidents or events that do not represent a danger or concern to the community.

Police Response Time

Response time is the amount of time, in minutes, that it takes the first officer to arrive on-scene once the dispatcher places the call in the police dispatch queue. Response times are not calculated for calls that remain in the police dispatch queue for more than fourteen hours after being received or require more than three hours for an officer to arrive on-scene. Both situations are usually the result of an atypical dispatched call or missing data.

In August 2020, a review of response times was conducted and a modification to the parameters on amount of time calls remain in the dispatch queue was made. Previously, four hours was the threshold, however this parameter was adjusted to fourteen hours to account for recent trends in dispatched call response times.