Police Officer Curtis Avery Van Derson

Police Officer Curtis Avery Van Derson

Creswell Police Department, Oregon

End of Watch Friday, November 5, 1971

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Curtis Avery Van Derson

Police Officer Curtis Van Derson was shot and killed when he was ambushed while responding to a bank robbery call at the Community Bank of Creswell at 265 East Oregon Avenue. He was shot by a suspect armed with a rifle who was in an ambush position across the street from the bank.

The suspect who murdered Officer Van Derson served only 14 years in prison for the murder. He was later convicted of manslaughter for another murder and was again released from prison. In 2008 he was convicted of attempted murder for a plot to murder a Lane County deputy district attorney.

Officer Van Derson's wife working as the dispatcher for the two-person department and dispatched him to the call after receiving a silent alarm alert from the bank.

Officer Van Derson was survived by his wife, daughter, and son.


  • Age 31
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle
  • Offender Released after 14 years

ambush, robbery

Most Recent Reflection

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Officer Van Derson,
On today, the 50th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Creswell. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

November 5, 2021

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