There are perhaps no two topics of greater interest to small-town television news producers than pets and crime. Occasionally, the two narratives intersect for what must feel like the Holy Grail of scoop for TV folks. Sometimes, though, editors, reporters, producers strain the limits of credulity in an attempt to forge a story when none is there simply because the ingredients are too tempting to ignore. But like trying to bake a cake without flour, the missing ingredient is sometimes just too conspicuous to ignore. Such was the case with KTVZ's strange attempt to fashion a who-dunnit storyline from the case of Reggie, a poodle who went missing from a Bend garage sale over the weekend. We'll spare you the details, but suffice it to say that the news team ran with the unsubstantiated idea that Reggie had been abducted from the garage sale while his owner was occupied. Mind you that no one including the owner actually saw Reggie taken from the home. That's what's known in police talk as "evidence." Lo and behold, Reggie has re-appeared - thanks in part to KTVZ's extended public service message. We're certainly glad to hear that Reggie has been re-united with his owner. But the coverage is baffling, particularly the innuendo in the most recent report, which painted the seemingly Good Samaritans as suspects in the imagined crime, saying that the "Hispanic woman and her daughter...matched the description of the pair last seen holding and petting the dog."
Seriously, it was a lost poodle. Do we really need to take a DNA sample, WTF?