Photos: Right: Early Clackamas County Courthouse
Below: Sheriff Bill Brooks

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Bill Brooks has a long background in law enforcement, including 27 years of administration with the Clackamas CoUnty Sheriff's Office. The county Board of Commissioners appointed Brooks Sheriff in August 1983, replacing Paul McAllister, who resigned after only two years. The Clackamas County Sheriff's Office has nearly 300 employees and an annual budget topping $21 million.


Brooks was born on Nov. 24, 1930 in Jefferson City, Mo. He attended elementary schools in Jefferson City, junior high in Alton, Ill., and high school in Newport, Ore. He graduated from Clackamas Community College in Oregon City and completed numerous professional training programs and advanced law enforcement and management courses.

Brooks began his law enforcement career in 1951 as a Deputy Sheriff for Multnomah County. After a year, he became a patrolman for the West Linn Police Department before joining the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office on Aug. 1, 1953. Before he was appointed Sheriff, Brooks served for more than 15 years as Chief Deputy Sheriff, where he was Chief Commander and Administrative Officer for the department and acted as the Sheriff's personal representative.

He was a Lieutenant with the department from 1960 to 1968, assigned as a Service Division Commander for four years when he managed the division composed of records, training, planning, research and fiscal management. For the other four years, Brooks was assigned as a Uniform Division Commander, where he managed all functions of patrol and investigative personnel and acted as field commander for major incidents.

In his early days with the Clackamas County Sheriff's Department, Brooks served as a Criminal Investigator and Uniform Division Patrol Sergeant.

Brooks belongs to a long list of professional organizations, including the Oregon State Sheriffs' Association. He was President of the state group in 1991 and Sheriff of the Year in 1985.

Brooks also has a distinguished military history with the United States Coast Guard and the Oregon National Guard Reserve, where he currently holds the rank of Colonel, assigned as Inspector General for headquarters of the Oregon State Defense Force.

Brooks belongs to a number of military organizations. He was on the Board of Directors of the Oregon Military Museum Foundation, retiring in 1981, and served for three years on the board of the Oregon National Guard Association. Brooks and his wife, Liz, live in Oregon City.

Clackamas County



W.W.H. Samson {standing} Clackamas County Sheriff from 1888 to 1892, was Justice of the Peace in 1911 when this photo was taken.




Oregon City, the county seat of Clackamas County, was the first incorporated city west of the Rocky Mountains. It was designated in the 1980s by the National Park Service as the official End of the Oregon Trail, a 2,000-mile road that brought pioneers from Independence, Mo. to the Northwest.

The county's colorful past also ineludes one of the first Sheriffs in the Oregon Territory-- William Livingston Holmes. He was elected to the position in 1845 and served until 1852. Holmes was an interesting man who also dabbled in politics and education. His historic home, the Rose Farm, has been preserved as a museum in the city. It was the second oldest mansion in Oregon City in 1847. In 1848, Territorial Governor Joseph Lane was inaugurated on the balcony and held the first Territorial legislative session in the ballroom of the home.

Clackamas County is named for the resident Clackamas Indians and is one of the four original Oregon counties. As capital of the Oregon Territory, Oregon City also was the site of the only federal and district courts West of the Rockies. In 1850, when San Francisco was platted, officials from the California city had to file the map in Clackamas County. The original plat hangs in a museum in Oregon City.

The territorial capital eventually was moved to Salem and the U.S. Court later was relocated to Portland.

The county stretches 1,879 square miles from Oregon City, with an elevation of 55 feet, to the peaks of Mount Hood, with an elevation of 11,235 feet. The population of the rapidly-growing suburb of Portland is more than 250,000 to make it the fourth largest county in the state.

Holmes was the first of 29 Sheriffs in the county. Many street names in the older parts of the city -- like Holmes Lane -- reflect the names of some of the early law enforcement leaders.

When Holmes' term was up, William C. Dement was elected, lasting nearly one year before resigning. He later served on the Oregon City Commission in 1861. When Dement left, Holmes was appointed to serve out the term until Septimus Heulat, a man with a long law enforcement background, was elected Sheriff. From 1862 to 1864, he was County Judge.

Almond Holcomb followed Heulat with two one-year terms. When he left, he became Justice of the Peace in Oregon City in 1860. Lewis Day was Sheriff of Clackamas County for only one year followed by John Towson Thomas, who was elected to a two-year term from 1860 to 1862. William P. Burns, a former wagonmaster, served for six years after being elected in 1862. Before taking over as Sheriff, he was Oregon City Marshal. After leaving his Sheriff's position, he became a Deputy United States Marshal and later the City Recorder for Oregon City.

John Myers, the former Sheriff of Stanislaus County in California from 1856 to 1860, was elected to the Clackamas County position in 1868 and was Sheriff for two years. When he left the county, he was appointed as the United States Marshal in Portland. Arthur Warner followed Myers when?he was elected Sheriff in 1870. The former Oregon City Commissioner who was Mayor of the city in 1863, was Sheriff of the county until 1872.

A former member of the Provisional Legislature and an Indian agent, Absalom Fouts Hedges became the county's 1 lth Sheriff when he was elected to the office in 1872. His term lasted two years until John T. Apperson was elected in 1874. Apperson didn't finish out his term, resigning on May 11, 1878. Before being elected Sheriff, Apperson served as a State Representative. After he left the Sheriff's Office, he served a four-year term as a State Senator. From 1888 to 1890, he was a State Representative again. When Apperson resigned as county Sheriff, Thomas M. Miller was appointed to take his place for two months. Miller spent 56 years as a court bailiff in Clackamas County and also served as Oregon City Marshal from 1865 to 1866. John G. Pillsbury was elected and served from July 1878 to 1882. He was a Clackamas County Sheriff' s Deputy for five years before he became Sheriff. After he left office, he was a member of the Oregon City Commission and worked for the Oregon City Land Office.

Adolphus Schoeps was elected Sheriff in 1882, serving until 1884. Before he was elected, he was a wool dresser for a local woolen mill. William Knight followed Schoeps when he was elected in 1884, serving for four years. He was the half-brother of Sheriff John Knight of Marion County. William W.H. Samson served for four years following Knight after spending 14 years as a Clackareas County Deputy. Six years after leaving office as Sheriff, Samson served as a court bailiff in the county.

Charles W. Ganong, a blacksmith who made the county's first Oregon Boot, was elected Sheriff for a two-year term from 1892 to 1894 followed by Eli Cook Maddock, a hotel operator with businesses in Oregon City, Heppner and Arlington, who also was elected to a two-year term. George W. Grace served a two-year term from 1896 to 1898. He later was elected to the Oregon City Commission. John J. Cooke was Sheriff of Clackamas County from 1898 to 1902.

He was followed by John R. Shaver, one of only eight Sheriffs in the state to be killed in the line of duty. Shaver was gunned down in a battle with an escaped prisoner in Woodbum on April 29, 1906. (See chapter on Sheriffs killed in the line of duty).

Robert Breckenridge Beatie was appointed to take Shaver's place and then was elected two times. Beatie was the son-in-law of former Sheriff Myers and the brother-in-law of Sheriff Cooke. He also served for a time as County Judge and court bailiff.

Ernest T. Mass was elected in 1911 and was Sheriff for four years followed by William J. Wilson, who was the first of three Sheriffs to spend more than 10 years as head of Clackamas County law enforcement. Mass was back again in 1925, serving as Sheriff until 1941. He was followed by[ Noble Fred Reaksecker, who was Clackamas County Sheriff until 1957. He was a former Oregon City Policeman and was a Deputy under Sheriff Mass.

Joseph Everett Shobe was elected Sheriff five times, spending 20 years as the head of Clackamas County law enforcement. Before he took office in 1957, Shobe was an Oregon City Policeman from 1935 to 1941 and a Clackamas County Sheriff's Deputy from 1941 to 1957.

John R. Renfro, a Deputy with the Clackamas County Sheriff' s Department, served a four-year term after Shobe left office. He returned to being a Deputy with the department after his term ended in 1981. Paul McAllister, a former Trooper with the Oregon State Police, was elected to a four-year term but resigned after serving only half the term.

Bill Brooks, was appointed to fill the vacancy left by McAllister in 1983. Brooks was elected to the position in 1984 and again in 1989.

Complex Crimes in Clackamas County

Two of Oregon's most intriguing crimes of all time occurred in rural Clackmas County within a period of less than two years.

On Aug. 31, 1987, a bow hunter stumbled across a badly decomposed body while on a steep, brushy slope of a privately-owned timber farm, 10 miles southeast of Molalla.

Over the next five days, searchers from the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office and a local Explorer Scout post would find six more decomposed bodies -- all women and all nude --along the same hillside, less than 100 yards from one another. Authorities were soon calling the Molalla Forest Murders the worst serial murder in Oregon history.

Little did authorities know that the person who would later be convicted of the seven murders was sitting in the Clackamas County Jail, charged with the unrelated stabbing death of a Portland prostitute in a restaurant parking lot.

Dayton Leroy Rogers, 33, of Canby, was arrested Aug. 7 -- about three weeks before the first Molalla forest body was discovered-- in connection with the stabbing death of a 25-year-old woman, Jennifer Lisa Smith, whose nude body was found by Deputies in a parking lot of a restaurant in Oak Grove.

A witness to the murder chased Roger' s pickup truck to Gladstone, then phoned the Sheriff's Office with a description of the truck and license number. Using automobile registration records, deputies tracked Rogers to a small engine repair business Rogers and his wife, Sherry, operated in Woodbum.

A subsequent search of a wood burning stove at the Rogers' residence turned up parts of women's clothing and jewelry later identified as belonging to some of the forest murder victims.

Rogers had a history of sadistic sexual crimes against women in Lane, Yamhill and Clackamas counties. In a 1972 Lane County case, he allegedly took a 15year-old girl to a wooded area to have sex, then stabbed her in the abdomen. The victim, who survived the attack, later told police Rogers proposed marriage immediately after he stabbed her.

During his closing arguments at Rogers' 1989 murder trial, Clackamas County Deputy District Attorney Andrejs I. Eglitis addressed Rogers' bizarre sexual appetite, including his fetish with women's feet. To establish his dominance over his female victims, Eglitis contended Rogers sawed off the feet of three of his victims and let them bleed to death.

Eglitis insisted Rogers delighted in torturing women. The prosecutor claimed Rogers deceived the women he hired as prostitutes, then drove them to the hills above the Molalla River where he bound them, tortured them and finally killed them for the sexual thrill he got out of it. What really tripped up Rogers, Eglitis told jurors, were the miniature vodka bottles and orange juice containers carelessly left scattered around the crime scene. Eleven prostitutes who testified during the trial said Rogers usually mixed vodka and orange juice drinks in the same type containers during their dates.

The all-woman jury deliberated a little more than six hours before returning with a verdict: Guilty of 13 counts of aggravated murder. Rogers managed to escape the death penalty following his March, 1988, conviction for the murder of Jennifer Lisa Smith when the jury which convicted him opted for a life sentence. But this jury wasn't as kind to Rogers. Three weeks later, jurors voted for death by lethal injection. Rogers remains on death row at the Oregon State Penitentiary.

A week after Dayton Leroy Rogers was convicted of the Molalla Forest Murders, four members of the Ecclesia Athletic Association were convicted, in the same courthouse, of first-degree manslaughter in the beating death of Dayna Lorae Broussard, the 8-year-old daughter of Ecclesia founder Eldridge Broussard.

The victim was taken by Ecclesia adults to Rural Fire District 71 in Clackamas at about midnight Oct. 13, 1988. Paramedics were unable to revive her. Authorities later learned she was beaten hundreds of times with a hose, a pipe and an electrical cord while other children watched.

Eldridge Broussard was not at the Ecclesia' s Sandy farmhouse where the beating occurred on the night of Oct. 13. But the strict discipline that he preached as part of the Ecclesia credo frequently resulted in child beatings. Eldridge Broussard himself was frequently whipped and beaten by his father, a Pentecostal minister in the Watts area of Los Angeles.

Originally, Broussard conceived the notion of forming a group to help black and minority families survive in the impoverished Watts neighborhood and to help young people steer away from drugs and crime. Broussard, who graduated from Pacific University in Forest Grove and had a brief but unsuccessful tryout with the Portland Trail Blazers professional basketball team, returned to Los Angeles in 1975 and began conducting Bible studies with his father. One of his young students was Dayna Grant, who later became his wife and the mother of their five children -- three boys and two girls.

Over the next five years, Broussard and his followers would buy an abandoned Watts bakery building and convert it into the Watts Christian Center. They also bought and renovated an old gymnasium at nearby Will Rogers Park to help train youths for athletics. Broussard had been attracting large crowds while preaching at Will Rogers Park. After preaching his sermon, he would lead his congregation on a run around the park for fun and exercise.

But Broussard was drifting away from his ministry by the late 1970s and early 1980s and was focusing more attention on enriching the bodies, rather than the souls, of his young followers. In 1982, he founded the Ecclesia Athletic Association to, shape group members through intense training and strict discipline so they could resist the temptations of crime and drugs in Watts.

Broussard and his followers hoped to train young athletes for the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles and future Olympic Games. He envisioned Ecclesiatype training programs developing elsewhere in the United States and abroad.

Broussard's group never was endorsed by the Olympic Organizing Committee, although it participated in peripheral Olympic-type programs and events. In April 1987, Broussard and his Ecclesia Athletic Association brought 70 to 100 men, women and children to a Sandy-area farm in an attempt to establish an athletic training camp. Neighbors immediately became suspicious about the group's secretive nature and its regimented lifestyle.

About all the nearby neighbors knew of Ecclesia was what they could see from a distance -- dozens of boys and girls running through the countryside, doing rigorous calisthenics Or working the land. Some of his neighbors complained Broussard and his followers were rude and evasive about the group's intent.

Neighbors complained long and loud to the media, county officials and just about everyone else who would listen.

Two months later, following extensive media coverage of the controversial group and its training camp, Ecclesia officials closed the athletic camp temporarily and several members returned to Los Angeles. In July, 1987, Ecclesia withdrew its request to Clackamas County for permission to set up tent shelters for 100 adults and children at the commune.

But a year after abandoning their Sandy farmhouse headquarters, Ecclesia retmed. For the most part, the group maintalned a relatively low profile and little was heard of the Ecclesia Athletic Association until the night of Oct. 13, 1988, when Dayna Broussard was rushed to Fire District 71 headquarters.

Fifty-three children, some with scars on their backs, subsequently were removed from the Sandy farmhouse by the state Children's Services Division. About half of the children were returned to their parents in Oregon. Several others are living with relatives in Florida and California, and some remain in foster care in CSD custody in Oregon.

Six Ecclesia adults were arrested in connection with Dayna Broussard's death. In October 1988 -- after an extensive investigation-- four of the six adults were indicted by a Clackamas County Grand Jury of first-degree manslaughter.

During the exhaustive three-month trial that followed, jurors heard testimony about other beatings and strict disciplinary action against other Ecclesia children. The jury, on May 12, 1989, convicted Willie K. Chambers, Brian J. Brinson, Constance Zipporah Jackson and Frederick Paul Doolittle of first- degree manslaughter.

All four were sentenced to 20 years in prison by a Clackamas County judge on June 23, 1989.

But the group's problems didn't end there. On April 5, 1990, a federal grand jury in Portland began investigating Ecclesia leaders for possible civil rights violations. The investigation culminated in the Feb. 8, 1991, arrest of Eldridge Broussard and three of his followers on charges of holding ECclesia children in slavery and conspiring to deny them their civil rights.

Broussard and two others -- Carolyn Van Brunt and Josie Ruth Faust -- were released Feb. 11, pending trial in federal court.

But Eldridge Broussard never made it to trial. The 38-year-old Ecclesia leader was found dead Sept. 5, 1991, in the same Sandy farmhouse where his daughter had been beaten to death three years earlier. A coroner's report indicated Broussard died of complications related to his diabetes. To the end, Broussard blamed the media and its negative publicity about the Ecclesia Athletic Association for contributing to his daughter's death and to the disintegration of his group.

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