ORS 811.540¹
Fleeing or attempting to elude police officer
  • penalty

(1) A person commits the crime of fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer if:

(a) The person is operating a motor vehicle; and

(b) A police officer who is in uniform and prominently displaying the police officer’s badge of office or operating a vehicle appropriately marked showing it to be an official police vehicle gives a visual or audible signal to bring the vehicle to a stop, including any signal by hand, voice, emergency light or siren, and either:

(A) The person, while still in the vehicle, knowingly flees or attempts to elude a pursuing police officer; or

(B) The person gets out of the vehicle and knowingly flees or attempts to elude the police officer.

(2) It is an affirmative defense to a prosecution of a person under this section that, after a police officer operating a vehicle not marked as an official police vehicle signaled the person to bring the person’s vehicle to a stop, the person proceeded lawfully to an area the person reasonably believed was necessary to reach before stopping.

(3) The offense described in this section, fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, is applicable upon any premises open to the public and:

(a) Is a Class C felony if committed as described in subsection (1)(b)(A) of this section; or

(b) Is a Class A misdemeanor if committed as described in subsection (1)(b)(B) of this section. [1983 c.338 §664; 1991 c.655 §1; 1997 c.532 §1; 1997 c.860 §1]


Notes of Decisions

Under Former Similar Statute (Ors 487.555)

Nonviolent flight from at­tempted arrest is not crim­i­nal, and thus evidence was insufficient to sustain escape charge where defendant was convicted of driving under influence of intoxicants and third de­gree escape. State v. Swanson, 34 Or App 59, 578 P2d 411 (1978)

Where defendant was driving car in one direc­tion on street, police of­fi­cer traveling in other direc­tion indicated by lights and signal defendant was to pull over, defendant pulled off road at first opportunity and immediately after stopping car jumped out and fled on foot, flight from car, standing alone, could not serve as basis for con­vic­­tion under this sec­tion. State v. O’Connor, 36 Or App 293, 584 P2d 352 (1978)

Campus security of­fi­cer who was also deputy sheriff was not “police of­fi­cer” within meaning of this sec­tion where his uniform and automobile identified him only as security of­fi­cer. State v. Beaman, 42 Or App 57, 599 P2d 476 (1979)

In General

Require­ment that police of­fi­cer be in uniform and display badge or be operating marked vehicle is essential ele­ment of of­fense that must be specified in indict­ment. State v. Burnett, 185 Or App 409, 60 P3d 547 (2002)

Person need not be within sight of pursuing of­fi­cer at time per­son flees or at­tempts to elude of­fi­cer by leaving vehicle. State v. Cave, 223 Or App 60, 195 P3d 446 (2008), Sup Ct review denied

Person does not commit repeated viola­tions of this pro­vi­sion simply because more than one of­fi­cer pursues per­son or because one of­fi­cer’s pursuit of per­son ends before an­oth­er of­fi­cer’s pursuit begins. State v. Reed, 256 Or App 61, 299 P3d 574 (2013), Sup Ct review denied

Where more than one of­fi­cer pursues per­son, per­son commits repeated viola­tions of this pro­vi­sion if per­son (1) stops running and hiding, (2) has sufficient time to make new, independent decision to flee or at­tempt to elude sub­se­quent pursuer and (3) flees or at­tempts to elude sub­se­quent pursuer. State v. Reed, 256 Or App 61, 299 P3d 574 (2013), Sup Ct review denied

Chapter 811

See also annota­tions under ORS chapter 483 in permanent edi­tion.

Notes of Decisions

Under Former Similar Statute

A party in viola­tion of a motor vehicle statute is neg­li­gent as a matter of law unless he introduces evidence from which the trier of fact could find that he was acting as a reasonably prudent per­son under the circumstances. Barnum v. Williams, 264 Or 71, 504 P2d 122 (1972)

Law Review Cita­tions

Under Former Similar Statute

10 WLJ 207 (1974)

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 811—Rules of the Road for Drivers, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors811.­html (2019) (last ac­cessed May 16, 2020).
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2019, Chapter 811, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano811.­html (2019) (last ac­cessed May 16, 2020).
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent. Currency Information