Frequently Asked Questions
When should I use 911?
If you are involved in a situation that requires the immediate response of police or fire services please dial 911.
What is the non-emergency police telephone number?
For non-emergency police services call (503) 397-1521. For police records information and other police business you can call (503) 397-3333, Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Should I call the police about suspicious activity in my neighborhood?
Absolutely. We need your help in keeping our communities safe and ask that you please call us when something does not seem right. Do not hesitate to use 911.
What is the curfew in the City of St. Helens?
Oregon State law states that no person under the age of eighteen shall be in a public place between 12 midnight and 4 a.m. unless that person is accompanied by a parent or guardian.
What should I do if I receive a bad check?
If you receive a check that is returned for NSF or a closed account, you must notify the account holder within (30) thirty days and give that person (10) ten days to make the check good. You may notify the person in writing. If you do send a letter, send it via certified mail return receipt requested. If after ten days the check is still outstanding, you may contact our fraud investigator for a possible criminal investigation.
What can I do about annoying or harassing telephone calls?
If you know the calling person, tell him or her not to call again. Please note the date and time of the notification (caller ID is helpful). If that person should call you again, he or she could be cited for telephonic harassment. If the caller is unknown to you please contact your telephone company regarding services that may be available to help identify the calling person.
I've been involved in a traffic accident. Should I call the police? Do I have to fill out a report?
Provided that you have exchanged information with the other parties involved you do not need to notify the police. If there is an injury or the vehicle damage exceeds $1000.00 you must file an accident report with DMV. The St. Helens Police Department has copies of DMV accident forms available. For additional information you can go to the Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles website.
How can I receive a copy of a police report?
You may obtain copies of police reports by contacting the St. Helens Police Department between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. The cost for most reports is $5.00.
Any reports involving a case that is under investigation cannot be released without approval of the City Attorney (503)-397-6272, or Columbia County District Attorney (503)-397-0300. For information on any reports involving a juvenile, you must contact the Columbia County Juvenile Department (503)397-0275.
Can I get a copy of my criminal history?
Yes. For that information you must contact the Identification Bureau of the Oregon State Police. Their telephone number is (503) 378-3070.
How can I get a restraining order?
You need to contact the Columbia County Circuit Court. For information please call (503) 397-2327.
How do I get a concealed weapons permit?
You will need to contact the Columbia County Sheriff's Office for a permit. Call (503)397-2511 for additional information.
How can I report suspected narcotics activity in my neighborhood?
If you suspect narcotics activity in your neighborhood please contact the Columbia Enforcement Narcotics Team at (503) 397-1167. If you do not find anyone in the office please leave a message and an investigator will contact you. You may also use our email link to leave information with us. Remember that information that you may be able to provide could be valuable to CENT investigators.
If I turn in found property and it isn't claimed, can I have it?
Yes and No. If you are the finder and wish to gain legal title to an item you must comply with Oregon law. If you are the finder of money or goods that are valued at $100.00 or more, you must give notice of your finding in writing to the County Clerk within ten days. Within 20 days of your finding you must publish within a newspaper of general circulation a notice of your finding. You must publish this notice once each week for two consecutive weeks. After three months, if the owner is not found, the finder becomes the owner of the goods.
What can I do about barking dogs or dogs running loose in my neighborhood?
We would encourage you to talk with the dog owner about the situation. If you are not comfortable with this you can contact our Code Enforcement Officer. Depending on the circumstances a citation may be issued to the dog owner.
Are there laws regarding loud noises within the city?
Yes. The City of St. Helens has a very comprehensive noise ordinance. That ordinance restricts noises within the City between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day. There are some exceptions and a person may apply for a variance. If you need more information regarding the noise ordinance please contact us.
What can I do about abandoned vehicles in my neighborhood?
Contact our Code Enforcement Officer for an inspection. If the vehicle meets the criteria for an abandoned vehicle a registered letter will be sent to the owner. If the vehicle is not moved within a given time frame, it will be towed.
How can I contact the Humane Society or the Columbia County Animal Shelter?
The Humane Society's telephone number is (503) 397-4353. The Columbia County Animal Shelter is at (503) 397-3935. Both agencies are located within the same building at 2084 Oregon Street, St. Helens, Oregon.