This morning the Board on Public Safety Standards and Training (BPSST) approved the addition of two fallen Multnomah County Sheriff’s Deputies during its quarterly meeting in Salem. The request to honor these two fallen officers was made at the request of Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese who found during historic research at the agency that the submissions were not made at the time these dedicated individuals died.
Background on each Deputy:
On March 5, 1969, Deputy Robert Ray “Bobby” Anderson of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office was shot by a suspect in his custody. Deputy Anderson and his partner were transporting a person in crisis to the hospital when the person lunged over the seat in the patrol car and took control of Anderson’s partner’s service weapon. The suspect shot both deputies and a civilian who was also in the vehicle accompanying the deputies. Both deputies were hospitalized in critical condition. Deputy Anderson was paralyzed as a result of the shooting and his health deteriorated until his death on December 1, 1994. Deputy Anderson was 49 years of age and served with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office for six years.
On July 25, 1982, Deputy Sheriff Irving Burkett of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office was shot during a jailbreak attempt from the Rocky Butte Jail. Deputy Burkett was shot by an inmate with a .22 sing-action handgun in the right side of his head. Inmates began the break out at approximately 10:15 pm. The inmates had a gun inside the jail and through a series of hostages made their way to the control center section of the jail. Deputy Burkett heroically attempted to alert the rest of the jail that there was an escape in progress and was shot. Six individuals were sentenced to 25 years in prison after pleading guilty to four felonies. Deputy Burkett was severely and permanently debilitated as a direct result of injuries sustained in the shooting. Deputy Burkett died from his injuries on August 22, 2003. At the time of the incident Deputy Burkett was 63 years of age and had served with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office for 14 years.
Overview and Process:
Deputy Burketts’s and Deputy Anderson’s names are honored on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C, and are both considered a line of duty deaths. The Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office requested that this same honor be given to both Deputies and that their names be added to the Oregon Fallen Officers Memorial through the historic recognition process. The historic recognition process allows names of officers who have died in the line of duty to be added by submitting documentation of the death which is carefully evaluated by a committee which makes its recommendation to the Board on Public Safety Standards and Training which makes the final review and renders a decision on addition.
The Board unanimously approved the addition of Deputy Sheriff Irving Lawrence Burkett and Deputy Sheriff Robert “Bobby” Anderson, both of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, names to the Oregon Law Enforcement Memorial Wall during the 2019 Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony on May 7, 2019 at 1 p.m. at the Oregon Public Safety Academy in Salem.
The State memorial currently honors 183 fallen Oregon law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty since the 1880s. This includes officers from city, county, state, tribal and federal law enforcement agencies who have served as law enforcement officers, corrections officers, and parole and probation officers. The recent line of duty death of Ashland Police Officer Malcus Williams, whose name will also be added during the 2019 ceremony, and the addition of Bend Police Sgt. John Lawrence, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Deputy Irving Lawrence Burkett and Deputy Robert “Bobby” Anderson, sadly will raise the number of officers honored on the state memorial to 187.
The Oregon Law Enforcement Memorial Fund raised funds to build the state memorial more than 20 years ago and hosts the annual ceremony. For more information on the Oregon Law Enforcement Memorial Fund and the statewide license plate that is available to honor fallen law enforcement officers and firefighters please visit
For more information on the Oregon Fallen Law Enforcement Officer Memorial please visit: http://www.oregon.gov/DPSST/AT/pages/olememorial.aspx