OKLAHOMA CITY – Three people are arrested and accused of looting from a disaster area.
The trio of suspects were caught red- handed allegedly stealing along I-35 and S.E. 44th St.
On the east side of I-35, many homes and businesses were ripped apart in the tornado.
Helping his mother who lived at the RV park, a witness saw several men loading a large air conditioner from the front of the post office into a pickup.
“I knew they probably didn’t have permission,” said Ryan Golden.
Ryan quickly alerted police, who arrested Anthony Miller, Michael Miller and Stanley White for illegally removing debris from the disaster area.
The crime disgusts Ryan.
“I mean, have some consideration for people that lost everything they own, you know,” said Golden.
“He’s not guilty of it. I know it’s a misunderstanding,” said Jerry White.
Jerry says his brother Stanley did not intend to break the law.
“He wouldn’t be stealing if he thought it was like looting,” said White.
We also went to the Miller’s home.
No one answered the door, but in the backyard, a tree fell over in the storms.
The man cutting down that tree for the suspect said there’s no excuse for looting.
“I guess they’re looking for money, but at least ask if it’s trash or garbage,” said JJ Quintero. “You can’t be out in those areas stealing.”
Because cleanup will likely continue for weeks, police say the alleged theft can serve as an important lesson.
“Just because there’s property outside a business does not mean it’s okay to take it,” said MSgt. Gary Knight, with the Oklahoma City Police Department.
“You know, you ain’t got to steal the stuff. Go ask and they might give it to you. All you’ve got to do is get their permission,” said Golden.
All three suspects were booked into the Oklahoma County Jail.
Anthony and Michael Miller also had outstanding warrants for a different larceny charge, as well as a wildlife warrant for fishing without a license.