5 Keizer officers cleared in shooting, suspect Sean Beck indicted

Keizer Police department

A Marion County Grand Jury unanimously found that Keizer police officers Jeremy Darst, Scott Keniston, Chad Fahey, Michael Kowash and Sergeant Kevin DeMarco were justified in their use of deadly force against Sean Beck on July 28.

The same grand jury indicted Sean K. Beck, date of birth 9/29/73, for: 

• Attempted Aggravated Murder with a Firearm (two counts)

• Manslaughter in the First Degree

• Unlawful Use of a Weapon with a Firearm (five counts)

• Theft in the First Degree (three counts)

• Felon in Possession of a Firearm (three counts) 

• Unauthorized Use of a Vehicle

• Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver

• Attempt to Elude a Police Officer


The status of Keizer police officer Cody Stupfel, who was also on the scene with the other five officers, was not released by Oregon State Police.

The Grand Jury’s findings stem from an incident that began at approximately 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 28, when Keizer Police responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle parked behind the VCA Veterinary Hospital, located at 4815 River Rd. N. in Keizer.

Upon arriving at the scene, officers confirmed that the suspicious vehicle had been reported stolen earlier that day. Additionally, the officers were able to observe that a man standing next to the vehicle, later identified as Sean Beck, had a gun on his left hip.

As police approached the vehicle Sean Beck got into the driver’s seat. He failed to comply with commands and began shooting at the officers, who returned fire. Sean Beck then drove away from the scene, going south on River Road, while police pursued him. 

During the pursuit, Becky Dietzel, date of birth 8/15/56, was struck and killed as she attempted to walk across River Road at the intersection of River Road and Cummings. Sean Beck continued driving until Salem Police were able to use a tactical maneuver to stop the vehicle near Home Depot on Cherry Avenue.

At that location police fired a single shot and, after a standoff, Sean Beck eventually surrendered and was transported to Salem Hospital due to multiple gunshot wounds. No police officers were injured during the extended confrontation with Sean Beck.

Sean Beck has been released from Salem Hospital and is currently lodged at the Marion County Jail where he is being held without bail on this case. Additionally, Sean Beck is also being held on a Fugitive Complaint from Washington State for a parole violation on a charge of Attempted Robbery in the Second Degree. His next court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday, August 17, at 8:30 a.m. at the Marion County Annex, 4000 Aumsville Hwy.

Due to the ongoing nature of the criminal case against Sean Beck, the District Attorney’s office will not release any further details regarding the shooting or crimes at this time.