Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Tue, July 22 2014 at 4:21 PM, Updated: Tue, July 22 2014 at 4:30 PM
Klamath Falls, Ore. - A Facebook page in Klamath Falls is helping to rekindle community interest in crime prevention...and the group now has over 2000 followers.
Patti McMann has been moderating the 'Klamath Community Watch' page for nearly a year.
The group attracted mainstream media attention when members began reporting acts of animal mutilation...
"It's something that needed to be out there." Notes McMann. And there needs to be some focus on this, because that's a horrible act."
The group has also helped to recruit new members for neighborhood watch groups. Sergeant Morrie Smith of the Klamath Falls Police Department likes that...
"They actually can assist us with possible location of anywhere from suspects, to stolen property, drug houses, etc."
McMann says moderating the page isn't without its headaches...
"Oh, some of the challenges...Sometimes, when a tragedy breaks out, they argue and fight."
But, the page has also helped to unite people during emergencies, like the recent fire in Sprague River.
"The community just got together, and donated, and helped everybody." Notes McMann. "It was just awesome."
McMann hopes the group will continue to expand.
Members have also been using the group to give warnings about possible scams, and to report stolen items.
Copyright KOBI-TV. All rights reserved unless otherwise stated. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without written permission.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.