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Woman sentenced to prison for South Obenchain looting charges

Katrina Diehl stole from a home in the Shady Cove area after the owners were evacuated, according to the Jackson County District Attorney's Office.

Posted: Oct 1, 2020 5:22 PM
Updated: Oct 1, 2020 5:25 PM

MEDFORD, Ore. — The Jackson County District Attorney's office announced on Thursday that a woman has been sentenced to prison time for her role in looting an evacuated home during the South Obenchain Fire.

On September 10, a witness reported to law enforcement that they saw 35-year-old Katrina Diehl (also known as Katrina Lathrop) and a man entering a home in the Shady Cove area and removing backpacks, loading the packs into a car and speeding away. The home was in a Level 3 evacuation zone at the time.

Deputies later tracked Diehl down, and she admitted that she did not know the owner of the house. Investigators were able to find the stolen items.

The owner of the home later confirmed to investigators that his home had been "burglarized and ransacked" with a number of items stolen, according to an affidavit from the arresting officer.

Diehl entered a guilty plea on Thursday for Burglary in the First Degree and Theft in the First Degree. For the first charge, Judge Lisa Greif sentenced Diehl to two years in prison with three years of post-prison supervision, in addition to restitution. For the second charge, Diehl received 13 months in prison, one year of post-prison supervision, and restitution.

The Jackson County Sheriff's Office said in mid-September that it had made nearly two dozen arrests in the Almeda and South Obenchain Fire areas — a handful of those arrests on looting-related charges.

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