Oregon PD turns to Facebook to find YMCA thief - WFXG FOX54 Augusta - Your News One Hour Earlier

Oregon PD turns to Facebook to find YMCA thief

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The Oregon PD has had great response from fans of their Facebook page. The Oregon PD has had great response from fans of their Facebook page.
OREGON, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Oregon police have been closing cases in the city thanks, in part, to the eyes and ears of their Facebook friends.

Since they first began interacting on Facebook, the Oregon Police Department said they've solved at least 20 crimes with the help of over 3,500 fans.

"Criminals often times talk," said Chief Mike Navarre of the Oregon Police Department. "They're not usually the smartest people in the world and they will tell a friend, who will tell another friend."

Now they need help finding the person responsible for breaking into the YMCA on Pickle Road. Police said the suspect broke in and left with cash from the ATM.

"It could be someone with a key, could be someone that hid out in the building," said Navarre. "Could be that a door was unlocked either intentionally or unintentionally."

Detective Janet Zale is the face behind most of the department's status updates. Right now she said detectives are reviewing video and pictures taken by the YMCA's cameras, and checking in with their Facebook friends who live in the area.

"People know their neighborhoods better than we do," Zale said. "And they know what cars are supposed to be there, what people are supposed to be there. They'll know something suspicious before we will."

Chief Navarre said he is still new to the Facebook phenomenon, but now that he's logged on, he sees what departments could be missing out on.

With this case, he hopes people act fast.

"If you can go into an ATM and get a substantial amount of money, more than likely they are going to repeat," Navarre said. "Whoever committed this crime is going to repeat this offense, so it's important that we identify who the person is."

The department also said their Facebook page has been so successful, other departments in the area are reaching out to them to learn how to get their own pages launched.

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