LINCOLN COUNTY, Tenn. (WHNT) -- Stealing from those who have already lost so much is a heinous crime, and one that will not go without punishment. That's the message Lincoln County Sheriff Murray Blackwelder wants looters to hear.
"These people are devastated and to take advantage of them is the lowest scum that I can think of," Sheriff Blackwelder told WHNT News 19.
It all started Friday morning. The Sheriff's Department got reports of people riding around in a truck near the damaged areas of Lincoln County. Deputies suspected the people in the truck were stealing scrap metal from properties that were hit during Monday's severe weather.
"Deputies stopped them and when they questioned them, they found out that they did not have permission to have what they had in the back of the truck," said Blackwelder.
Several adults and a juvenile was arrested and the vehicle was impounded. "They've been warned, don't say you didn't know."
Blackwelder said he means business. This is not the time to push the limits in Lincoln County.
"If you remotely look like you're stealing or taking advantage of these people down here, we are going to put you in jail," he said.