Editor's note: Every week a Lake Oswego police officer answers your questions in this space. Send your questions to reporter Cliff Newell at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 503-636-1281, ext 105.

"Would it be appropriate to call 911 for assistance if a door-to-door salesman refused to leave your house after you declined his product and you insisted that he leave?"


First, I’d like to address the point that you have let a total stranger in your house. Regardless of who you are, you should never let anyone you don’t know in your house. If someone you don’t know asks to come in your house whether it’s to sell you something, use your phone or your bathroom, you’d be best advised to say sorry and then call the police department, on our non-emergency line 503-635-0238. In this day and age, very few people need to enter your house for any of these reasons and if they are really in need of help, an officer can figure that out for you.

Now, if you’ve invited a salesperson in your house and you’ve asked them to leave and they refuse, you should most definitely call 911 for assistance. If they are merely standing outside of your residence, refusing to leave and you can close the door and they are not a threat to you, you could still call the police department for assistance, but please do so on the non-emergency line 503-635-0238. Again, let an officer respond and deal with this person instead of confronting this person by yourself.

— Officer Ken Engstrom

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