Earlier this month, a tornado swept through Bowling Green, Kentucky, killing more than 70 people. Decent people saw it as a terrible tragedy while unfortunately, others appear to have seen it as a green light for crimes of opportunity.
At least five people were arrested in Graves County after local deputies and state troopers pulled over a vehicle in which every passenger allegedly was in possession of stolen property taken from homes and vehicles that were ravaged by the deadly tornado. Graves County Sheriff Jon Hayden reported Friday that deputies were tipped off about several people rummaging through the property of tornado victims in an area that was “particularly hit hard by the tornado and resulted in deaths,” according to WTHR 13.
The suspects are not only accused of having stolen property on their person, but the vehicle they were in was allegedly towing multiple vehicles that had been damaged by the tornado.
If you’re wondering what kind of people would take advantage of a deadly natural disaster that claimed dozens of lives and destroyed countless homes, the Graves County Sheriff’s office said in a statement that “syringes containing Methamphetamine were found in the vehicles” being operated by one of the suspects.
According to Hayden, some of the suspects claimed they were given permission to search through the leveled properties, but he doesn’t appear to have much faith that there’s any truth to those claims.
“Statements from some of the suspects contradicted each other as to having permission from the homeowners,” he said. “Some of the claims made by suspects were disproven after sheriff’s deputies were able to find and question the homeowners of where property was taken.”
As egregious as this story might be, maybe it can dispel the notion that looting is a thing that only happens during riots over police brutality or that it only happens in Black neighborhoods. The truth is, many poor people and drug addicts steal and where there’s a disaster, many will see an opportunity.
Anyway, speaking of police brutality, WPSD 6 reported that Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron—the man who was utterly useless in fighting for justice for Breonna Taylor—appears to have different energy when it comes to bringing looters to justice.
“Looting and theft will not be tolerated,” Cameron said in a statement. “Our office has spoken with Graves County Sheriff Jon Hayden and Graves County Commonwealth’s Attorney Richie Kemp, and the full force of the law will be brought against anyone who tries to take advantage of Kentuckians.”