Former Forest Grove officer surrenders police certification

Washington County

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A former Forest Grove police officer has agreed to relinquish his police certification after allegedly damaging a family’s property while intoxicated.

Steven Teets is agreeing to the terms as part of a civil lawsuit settlement between him and the homeowner, stemming from an incident that occurred on Halloween of 2020. Teets still faces criminal charges after allegedly pounding on the door of the family that was flying a Black Lives Matter flag that day.

It was just before 1 a.m. on Halloween morning when Mirella Castaneda heard her car alarms going off. When she looked outside, she says she saw a man hit her Black Lives Matter sign.

“He sees me, he starts coming to me, towards my door,” said Castaneda. “I slam the door and lock it.”

She said the man continued to pound and hit her door, trying to get in.

“When he really couldn’t get in, he starts breaking all our decorations that we had there. There were censored clowns, he kicked flower pots,” said Castaneda.

She called 911 and a Forest Grove police officer showed up minutes later.

“I told her I have never seen anyone behave that violently towards me—or anyone. She said, ‘if we find any information, we will let you know,’ and I said, ‘please do.’”

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office soon took over the case.

Teets was cited for criminal mischief in the second degree. He was not arrested because of COVID-19 restrictions and protocols. Castaneda said after this incident, it’s shaken her and her family’s sense of security.

“If they don’t know how to behave and they don’t know how to control them, they don’t have any business being a police officer,” said Castaneda.

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office said the officer appeared to be intoxicated after the incident. KOIN 6 News also learned the Forest Grove officer was reassigned to administrative duties afterward.

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