Police agencies outside of Medford prepared for ‘greenway ripple effect’

SOUTHERN OREGON — Police agencies in the Rogue Valley are watching what happens in Medford closely.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and Central Point Police Department say their staff is ready to provide resources to people on the Bear Creek Greenway if they move outside of Medford.

Jackson County Sheriff Nathan Sickler says at this time, 25-30 people camp on the greenway in county jurisdiction.

He says his staff goes out on weekly patrols to offer information and resources.

He says the Sheriff’s Office will check for open beds at local shelters and refer people to them if they’re available.

“We don’t have as significant a problem as the City of Medford does right now, but we do anticipate there could be some individuals moving – but our staff is prepared for that, we’re in constant communication with the City of Medford,” said Sheriff Sickler.

He says an issue many agencies face, is that some people who camp on the greenway choose not to take advantage of the help they’re offered.

Sheriff Sickler says he’s not sure at this time if the county will follow Medford in issuing citations to get people off of the greenway.

Central Point Police tell me much of its greenway space burned last summer, so camping is less of a problem right now.

NBC5 News reporter Mariah Mills is a Medford native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor’s Degree in journalism. She also minored in sociology.

In school, she covered Oregon athletics for the student-run television station, Duck TV. When she’s not reporting, she’s reading, hiking and rooting for her favorite teams, the Seattle Seahawks and the Oregon Ducks.

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