CRIME

‘Little People, Big World' Stars Receiving Disturbing Threats, Police Say

05/30/2013 04:06 pm ET

Reality TV dad Matt Roloff and his family are the victims of increasing and disturbing online threats.

According to the Washington County Sheriff's Office, it's not uncommon for public figures like the Roloffs -- stars of the reality TV show "Little People, Big World" –- to receive a certain level of harassment. However, recent Facebook and email messages sent to the family, along with harassing phone calls, are of increasing concern to police.

"It has really escalated over the last month to two months. The threats have got more hateful and more graphic in nature. They do seem to be escalating and becoming more disturbing," Sergeant Bob Ray told The Huffington Post.

Matt Roloff did not immediately respond to a request for comment from HuffPost on Thursday. Speaking with KATU.com, Roloff and his wife, Amy, said the content of the messages they have received include threats on their lives.

"We're getting death threats," Matt Roloff said. "We're getting phone calls in the middle of the night."

Amy added, "I'm scared at night. I'm a lot more afraid at night when it's dark here."

Ray did not elaborate on any of the messages, but did say some of them are "specific" threats. While the messages have been received from a variety of sources, authorities suspect the same person or group of people is responsible.

"Quite a few of them are very similar. [It looks like] someone is cutting and pasting a lot of the stuff because, quite frankly, the grammar is rather atrocious," Ray said.

The sheriff's office is taking the threats seriously and Ray said they have identified "people that we are looking at."

The FBI is also involved in the case, since some of the messages have included bomb threats, as well as threats against Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber and Portland Police Chief Mike Reese.

"We’re notifying them of the info we have," Ray said. "We'd like to bring this to an end."

Anyone with information in the case is asked to contact the Washington County Sheriff's Office at 503-629-0111.

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