PORTLAND - When his car was ransacked and it wasn't a top priority for police, a Portland man decided to play detective. He got the surveillance video himself and called KGW.
Roger Jensen said when you're the victim of a crime, no matter how small, you want to find out who did it.
I always wanted to volunteer for the police, said Jensen with a laugh.
You could say Jensen, 71, a retired Oregonian photographer is determined.
Now at least I know [now] who did the stealing, he said.
On Sunday, Jensen parked his Honda at the Smart Park garage at 3rd Avenue and Taylor in downtown Portland, while he walked the Rock and Roll Half Marathon.
Sure enough, I opened the trunk and no bag, he said, after coming back to the car. Before he even knew anything was stolen, a crook had charged thousands of dollars on his credit cards.
Big Lots and Office Max at Mall 205 were among the stores the thief went to. Jensen filed a police report for the $4,000, but Portland police told him the amount was really too small to do anything.
Jensen understands that.
They've got a big force and they're busy. They get a lot of overtime and everybody wants them to do things, he said.
For the most part, that's true, said Sergeant Pete Simpson with the Portland Police Bureau.
With our resources we have a real limited ability to focus on every single case. We're not happy about that, but it has unfortunately been the reality and it's been the reality for several years. Our white collar crimes detail focuses on high dollar crimes, mostly embezzlement cases where you're focusing on tens of thousands and hundreds and thousands of dollars, Simpson added.
Jensen decided to take matters into his own hands.
I thought, 'Well, I'm going to go out to Office Max and see if I can get the surveillance video myself, said Jensen.
He got the store to give him the video of the woman he and the store said charged thousands on his cards.
Sometimes the power of TV and somebody sees them. Then, you get 'em, he said.
Police said it helps them too, if the victims do some of the legwork on these types of crimes.
We try to work with victims on these cases where they get information of a suspect, said Simpson. You know, you're retired and you have nothing to do, so let's go catch a bad guy, said Jensen. If you recognize the woman or have any information, police said they want to hear from you.