A Marion County Sheriff’s Office deputy arrested on theft and misconduct charges is accused of stealing five shotguns from a deceased Salem man’s home.
According to a Salem police probable cause statement, Sean Thomas Banks was on-duty when he met a Keizer woman at the home of her recently deceased father in Oct. 2015.
The woman told police she contacted Banks because her father had a large number of firearms at his house and she was uneasy about leaving them unsecured.
Banks, 49, of Keizer, took the guns away “for safekeeping” in his patrol vehicle. He did not give the woman a property sheet or receipt.
According to police, he went on to sell and consign five of the shotguns, including a Remington 1100 shotgun, a Weatherby Orion 12-gauge shotgun, a Beretta 12-gauge shotgun, a Browning A5 20-gauge shotgun and a Winchester Model 23 XTR shotgun, at Tick Licker Firearms in Salem and Rich’s Gun Shop in Donald.
During a separate forgery investigation into Banks, Salem police learned he was involved in the suspicious firearms transactions.
Banks initially denied stealing any guns from the man’s estate, but ultimately admitted to detectives that he stole several shotguns while on duty and sold them.
Banks was booked into Linn County Jail on five counts of first-degree theft and one count of official misconduct.
Marion County Sheriff Jason Myers said his office learned Banks, a detective, was being investigated by Salem Police in March. Banks has been with the agency for five years and was put on administrative leave July 12.
During his initial appearance in Marion County Circuit Court, Banks’ bail was set at $55,000.
His next court appearance is scheduled for Sept. 5.