When police respond to a 911 call, they never know exactly what kind of situation they’ll be walking into. However, after a few years on the job, they get pretty good at guessing what happened based on the information provided by the 911 caller.
On November 6, 2017, police officers from a town in Oregon received a call from a concerned UPS driver who reported hearing someone screaming out for help. They guessed someone had been injured or assaulted in the home, however, when an officer arrived at the scene, he was stunned when he saw who had really been crying for help…
The UPS Driver
UPS driver and delivery man Lee Purdy spends his days delivering packages to homes around the suburbs outside of Portland, Oregon. On the afternoon of Monday, November 6, 2017, Lee was delivering packages all over Clackamas, Oregon, a suburb about 20 minutes outside of Portland.
A Typical Day
The day had started like every other day for Lee, who spent the morning delivering packages to residents and leaving delivery attempt notices for people who weren’t home. However, Lee was caught off-guard when he walked up to 1 house and heard something he never expected to hear while on duty…
An Unusual Delivery
As Lee approached a home that was on his route for delivery that day, he heard a strange noise coming from inside the residence. Lee wasn’t entirely sure, but it sounded like a woman was inside the house crying out for someone to help her.
Cries For Help
“I wasn’t sure what to think at first,” Lee said as he clearly heard the words ‘Help me! Help me!’ over and over again. Lee left the package at the house and walked back to his truck. Normally, Lee would have driven off to the next home on his route, but he waited to see if he could hear anything else…
Getting Back To Work
Lee tried to move on and get back to work, however, he couldn’t stop thinking about what he had just heard. He thought maybe he had just heard the TV or a recording, but there was a chance a woman was really in danger and in need of help and he couldn’t just forget about it.
Doing The Right Thing
Lee decided to call his wife and explained what he had just heard while out delivering packages around the neighborhood. Lee’s wife could sense he was really freaked out, so they both agreed it would be best to call the police and let them handle it…
A Concerned Citizen
“I asked them to do a courtesy check to make sure nothing weird was going on,” Lee said. “It was clearly weighing on him,” said Brian Jensen, the public information officer for the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office. Shortly after receiving the call, officers were sent out to the house to figure out if anyone needed help.
The Courtesy Check
Deputy Hayden Sanders drove to the address that Lee provided and contacted the owner of the home to see if they would allow him to check the house because they had received a call from a concerned citizen. “The deputies were able to contact the owner and gain entrance into the residence,” Sergeant Jensen said…
Searching The Home
With the homeowner’s approval, Deputy Sanders entered the house and discovered the source of the scream. Instead of finding a woman in distress, Sanders discovered the source of the scream was actually a pet parrot named Diego.
The Source Of The Screams
“Sure enough it was Diego the parrot yelling for help,” Sergeant Jensen said. “Nobody was in distress. Diego was fine.” According to Sanders, the tiny green and yellow bird looked to be in perfect health and well cared for by his owners…
A Comical Discovery
“We’re thankful. It’s super funny. We were ribbing [Sanders] a little bit,” Jensen said. “We’re just glad that no one, including the bird, actually needed any help.” After the police were able to confirm that no one in the home was in danger and no one was in any danger, they notified Lee about what they found.
Peace Of Mind
At first, Lee felt silly for calling the police, but he would have done it again if he thought there was a chance that someone, person or animal, was screaming out for help. Lee was relieved and glad he had peace of mind about the strange encounter, but that peace of mind didn’t last long…
Something Doesn’t Add Up
Lee was relieved that no one actually needed the police’s help, however, the more he thought about the situation, he couldn’t understand why the parrot was so distressed and crying out for help loud enough for Lee to hear it from the home’s front lawn.
“Why was this bird yelling ‘help me’? There’s got to be a reason,” Lee said about the bird’s strange and worrying behavior. When Susan Baird, the owner of Diego and the home, heard about what happened, she was happy to clarify for Lee and the police…
A Talkative Pet
According to Baird, Diego was born in 1976 and was given to her by a friend about 2 decades ago. Over the years, he’s learned a variety of words and phrases, like ‘help me’. Diego even mimics other animals like dogs and cats by barking and meowing.
Translating Diego’s Phrases
“He says quite a few things. He’s very personable,” Susan said about her feathered companion. Susan also explained that when Diego cries out for help, it doesn’t always mean he’s actually in danger or needs help. Instead, he uses that phrase when Susan isn’t close by…
According to Susan, the first time Diego cried out ‘help me’ was during a party that she had been hosting in her home. When Diego didn’t see his owner in the room full of strangers, he started calling out for help and didn’t stop until Susan arrived by his side.
2 Weeks Apart
When Lee walked up to the front door of her home that Monday afternoon, Susan had been out of town for the past 2 weeks. During that time, Susan’s daughter had been coming over to take care of Diego, who wasn’t happy that Susan had been gone so long…
Crying Out For Attention
Susan believes that when Diego heard someone walking up to the front door of the home, he thought it might have been Susan coming home and was crying out for her to give him some long-overdue attention. “He does not like me to be gone for a long time,” Susan said. “He has really missed me.”
When Susan actually did arrive home the following evening, Diego wouldn’t stop talking about how happy he was that she was finally back. “I opened the cage and he was just wanting to make contact. He’s just a part of the family,” Susan said. “Sounds reasonable,” Lee said when he heard Susan’s explanation. “That makes sense.”