Lieutenant looks for clues in 87 year-old case

A local Oregon State Police Lieutenant has dedicated hundreds of hours of person time to an 87 year-old-case. She is now asking for the community’s help. 20902

Oregon State Police bring their recruits to a Josephine County Memorial every year. It symbolizes the sometimes grave sacrifices that come with the job. These trips sparked a question. This question has now led to a historical mystery one officer has spent countless hours trying to solve.

On July 1, 1933, Trooper Burrell Baucom stopped what appeared to be a stolen car. He approached the two men in the vehicle, near a wide spot on the side of Sexton Mountain. “Realizing they had been caught, they panicked and he shot Trooper Baucom once in the stomach,” said Lt. Stephanie Bigman. She says after a struggle, Trooper Baucom was shot three more times in the head and neck.

Trooper Baucom was the second OSP Trooper to die in the line of duty. It’s not the suspects Lt. Bigman is looking for, as they were caught shortly after the crime. There was a monument places near the reported site of Baucom’s murder, but the exact location is now a mystery.

“We know that it was on US-99. US-99 was decommissioned and I-5 took its place. At the time it was decommissioned, [the monument] was moved off. We don’t even know what year that actually was,” said Lt. Bigman. She thinks it was sometime in the 1960s.┬áThe monument now sits at a rest stop near Merlin.

“This whole project of mine started with a single question. It was where was this monument behind me originally placed?,” said Lt. Bigman.

She wants a fallen officer sign on the side of Sexton summit on I-5 and if she can find the exact location, a historical marker.

“We always say we won’t forget these people who have made these ultimate sacrifices but his story is being lost,” said Lt. Bigman.

She hoped to find someone who has the answers before the stories passed down from 1933 are lost forever.

Madison LaBerge is the anchor of NBC5 News Weekends at 6 and 11. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Madison is originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico. She loves living in the Pacific Northwest. She can't get over "how green everything is!" When Madison is not at work, she looks for new and exciting cooking recipes and explores Southern Oregon. Feel free to send her story ideas or the address of your favorite Mexican food restaurant!
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