Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Tue, May 22 2012 at 4:17 PM, Updated: Tue, May 22 2012 at 4:40 PM
A man charged with sexually abusing a young boy is still representing his ward on the Klamath Falls city council...
60 year old Greg Taylor is accused of touching a 5 year old boy's penis in Corvallis in late March.
NBC5 spoke to Taylor just prior to Monday night's council meeting...
"Greg, obviously you're facing some serious charges here. Is there anything you could say to your constituents?' 'I'm advised to say 'no comment'. Thank you."
While he's on paid leave from his teaching job at Klamath Community College, Taylor is still attending city council meetings. Klamath Falls city charter states that a vacancy can be created on council only if a council member is convicted of a felony. However, questions have been raised as to whether the charges pose enough of a distraction that they may impact Taylor's ability to represent his ward.
Court affidavits state that the boy yelled when Taylor touched the boy's penis. The affidavit also states that Taylor had written a letter to the boy's parents, saying that he had been seeking a minister, and has confessed his wrong doing.
Former Klamath Falls city council member Betty Dickson says, "I'd probably resign, public perception being what it is. I would probably resign."
Even if the charges were not true? "Even if the charges were not true, I would resign." Noted Dickson.
Council member Bud Hart disagrees...
"He's a man, in my opinion, of the highest moral and ethical principles...And I have utmost confidence that he's representing his constituents, and there should be no distraction."
For now, Taylor continues to represent ward 3.
"But it's entirely up to him to make that decision." Adds Betty Dickson.
No trial date has yet been set, and the case has not yet been presented to a Benton County grand jury. The next status hearing for the case is scheduled for June 11th.
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.