In Custody Death Investigation Continues

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MEDFORD, Ore. – A Medford man leads troopers on a high speed chase and dies being taken into custody.

Police say 9:30 Wednesday evening, troopers attempted to stop 42-year-old Joseph Vavorsky for two traffic violations but he decided to elude OSP heading northbound on Interstate 5. They say he stopped the car and fled on foot over a chain link fence on the side of the freeway.

Once Vavrosky saw Medford Police officers waiting for him on the other side, he turned around and climbed the fence again. Officers deployed their tasers, but it did not stop him. Eventually, officers located him in some bushes in the Greenway area and handcuffed him. That’s when Vavrosky collapsed.

“He obviously just ran from the officers for quite a ways rather hard so we expected him to be exhausted, so we weren’t’ sure if he were seeing exhaustion or some other type of problem but we quickly realized the problem was that he collapsed,” explained Medford Police Lt. Mike Budreau.

Paramedics took him to the hospital where he later died.  Officers say Vavorsky is known to police and a frequent drug user.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office is the lead agency in the investigation. Investigators are performing an autopsy and toxicology examination.



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  1. milt says:

    Well of coarse they don’t know and if they did do you really think they would tell the truth
    come on get your head out people.and then they will have another police department investigate them just like they all do.YEA RIGHT

  2. Kori says:


  3. rogue53 says:

    The cops in Medford, and Jackson County as a whole are the worst I’ve ever encountered. Egotistical, arrogant, and absolutely have never been taught how to show respect to the people they are supposed to be serving. Respect them? Not a chance. Since the increase in the State Police staff, they are becoming more and more like the clowns in Jackson County. BTW, I’m 4 generation born and raised here, I know of what I speak.

    Now we’re supposed to talk the lying cops version of his sudden death once in custody? Here take a look at what cops do when they have a guy in custody, and see if you can respect anyone won’t stand up for the victims, instead of standing behind the ‘blue wall’. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vg45tYJZ7rM&feature=related Now, you decide: Is there any justification for that? Jackson County Sheriff’s office is only one step behind in their abuse, and getting worse by the day.

  4. Stephanie says:

    He probably had a heart condition due to heavy drug use for years!!!!

  5. Minka says:

    A known drug user running from the cops, and we’re going to blame the cops for doing their job? What is with this mentality, people? He initiates a high-speed car chase, putting lives in jeopardy, eludes police, and they try to stop him without force, find him HIDING in the Greenway, and they catch him, and he dies. This is MPD’s fault how? He was BREAKING THE LAW. Don’t break the law, and this crap won’t happen.

    How about those that are so critical of the way police officers do their jobs not bother to call them when your own family or you are in crisis, m’kay?

  6. Milt says:

    Well yes there was a high speed chase so they say (video???)
    Video of any of this and to have another cop shop checking it out please
    thats like having the bad guys policing the bad guy give me a break.
    You know they all cover each others ass and to even have it go before the grand jury
    it’s just the cops words againsd a dead man WOW wonder who will win that one????
    They are all in it together so i say watch you back and if you get pulled over for any reason
    call someone you know have tem on the phone with you, explain what is going on and you are in fear of your life. keep them on the phone tell the cop what you are doing and why.

  7. reality says:

    Vavrosky played the game and lost due to his reckless behavior. Good father? Hardly! Was he caring for his children when he was out abusing drugs and running from the police? Family and friends need to be realistic and stop pointing their fingers at the police. Maybe that type of enabling is what kept him using drugs and ultimately killed him? Me thinks so….

  8. A.S. says:

    Do your research Rogue53. http://www.exciteddelirium.org/ I have worked with local agencies many time and they are outstanding, especially JCSO and PAP. Posting videos of cops maybe not doing their job correctly has no point. It is a very small percentage that don’t do their job right. Do a ride along with each agency and see how hard their job is and what challenges they face.

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