Animal mutilations investigation in Klamath Falls

, Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Fri, August 8 2014 at 3:12 PM, Updated: Fri, August 8 2014 at 3:20 PM

Klamath Falls, Ore. - Pet owners in Klamath Falls are on edge following reports of animal mutilations.

We can't show you the photos of how several dogs, and a cat were found.

"They were skinned completely."  Notes Gale McMahon of Klamath County Animal Control.  "Some were decapitated, some were skinned completely from head to toe."

The first incident was reported in June of last year...the most recent was in February.

The mutilated animals were then set out along public walkways. 

McMahon says that police aren't saying just how many animals have been found...

"For the simple reason we don't want to release any information that may compromise the investigation."

Klamath County District Attorney Rob Patridge says that some evidence has been recovered...

"We're pursuing some forensic evidence, hopefully to catch the offender or offenders."

We asked Patridge if the mutilations were the result of a gang initiation...

"We hope that's not the case, but we do know that animal mutilation is part of some of the rituals of some of these gangs."

None of the animals have been reported as lost or stolen, but Patridge says pet owners are still concerned...

"People are scared to put their dogs and cats out."

Gale McMahon says the case is a high priority...

"If I have the ability, I will hunt to the ends of the Earth to find somebody like this to take them to justice."

Animal control officers say they're still looking for tips from the public that may help to crack the case.

Those with information are asked to call 911.

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About the Author

Lyle Ahrens

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.

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