Sheriff: 2 arrested for stealing from veterans post several times

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LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Two people are behind bars after they stole numerous items from American Veterans Post 127, authorities said.

The Laurel County Sheriff's Office arrested Lawrence Mullis, 48, and Rebecca Bates, 36, on burglary charges.

"It was no longer just a random target," Candace Morgan, the post's commander said.

The Laurel County Sheriff's Office arrested Lawrence Mullis, 48, and Rebecca Bates, 36, Tuesday morning.

Investigators gathered information about several burglaries at the veterans post off South Laurel Road. The stolen property was found on KY 1223 and on Standard Avenue.

Deputies say Mullis appeared in the surveillance video, breaking into doors, windows and even attempting to cut wires to what he thought were connected to cameras.

The stolen property recovered included a large Sentry safe, a smaller safe, a dollar change machine, a knife, a fishing pole and DeWalt drills.

Safes containing thousands of dollars were cut open. Now post members are praying for a miracle to help them stay open.

"It would be just by the grace of God we make it another month," Morgan said.

During the recovery of the items, deputies found drugs in the couple's kitchen that were within reach of a 10-year-old and a 13-year-old living there.

"The only thing that I knew was there that I didn't know was stolen was the fishing pole and drills," Bates said. "I'm pissed off. I mean, I'm sitting here in jail and my kids are with a woman that is their makeshift grandmother."

Morgan says she is sad to see a family torn apart but must continue to fight for her mistreated veterans.

"He [Mullis] has put us in a position where not only can I not help veterans right now but I can't help the community either," she said.

Mullis and Bates face two counts of third-degree burglary, two counts of receiving stolen property under $10,000, two counts of second-degree wanton endangerment and marijuana trafficking.

Both were taken to the Laurel County Detention Center.

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