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John Day Cops Tell Sad Tale, Get 2 Cars

JOHN DAY – Drivers have been known to try a sob story to sway a police officer.

How about police using one get a new patrol car?

That’s just what the John Day Police did to win one of two “new” cars recently added to their fleet.

The Gresham Police Department, in an effort to help communities on tight budgets, invited small police departments – staffed by 10 or fewer – to offer up their best sob story for a shot at winning one of two used vehicles they planned to drop from their fleet.

John Day Police snagged one of the two cars, a 2008 Ford Crown Victoria with about 111,000 miles. Acquired in late February, it’s currently being given a John Day Police paint-and-decal job at Doug’s Auto in John Day.

Police Chief Rich Tirico said he found out about the contest through an ad in a police publication.

Tirico’s sad tale simply laid out the bleak details of his department: an agency he has managed to keep within budget for eight years, despite being in a county that’s had the highest unemployment in the state for the past several years, and which has three vehicles that are over 10 years old and at 200,000-plus miles.

“With times being tough, the City of John Day has really stepped up with some creative ways to replace equipment and offer the best services to the community,” Chief Tirico said.

Their other newly acquired vehicle is a 2005 Crown Victoria, with about 103,000 miles, donated by the Bandon Police Department at the beginning of March. Chief Tirico learned about its availability at a conference. It will soon have its turn under the paint sprayer.

Tirico said they are basically getting both cars for about $3,000. The cost of the painting-and-decal work for each is about $3,000, but Doug’s Auto is donating half the cost.

The acquisitions will replace two of the department’s three older cars, and Tirico is on the lookout for one more to complete the upgrade of the fleet. The department has two more recent vehicles, a 2008 and 2010, that continue in service.

The department will paint the two older cars and put them up for sale in the near future, which will help pay the expense of painting the new cars.


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