Reward offered for info on tires

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 18, 2014

A $1,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for slashing tires on three vehicles in Opp earlier this week.

Opp Assistant Chief of Police Kevin Chance confirmed that there were three vehicles on two streets “within a block of each other” that were damaged Monday night. One of those vehicles, a pick-up truck, belonged to Chuck Patterson, who became a successful candidate for revenue commissioner on Tuesday. Patterson reported the incident about 6:30 a.m., and said political signs also were damaged.

Paul Armstrong – whose stepdaughter, Meredith Peters, also was a candidate for revenue commissioner – announced the reward Thursday. Armstrong said was he was upset by broadcast media reports that, in his opinion, made it sound as if someone from Peters’ campaign were responsible for the damages. Those news reports did not include the fact that other vehicles also had damages, Armstrong said.

“Congratulations go out to Chuck Patterson on his election as revenue commissioner,” Armstrong said. “He and his family and supporters worked very hard. I wish you great success. Our county deserves no less.”

But Armstrong said he was bothered that the reports, which were repeated throughout the day, might have led some to believe the damage was politically motivated.

“Me, my family, nor anyone I know, did not do this vandalism in Opp,” he said. “I will pay $1,000 for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the criminal. Call the Opp Police Department or the sheriff.”

Patterson said didn’t think the damage was done by a political foe.

“I never thought of it as being a politically motivated thing,” Patterson said. “I was so concentrated on the election that I was just worried about getting it fixed and getting to Andalusia.”

Assistant Chief Chance said, “We don’t know who may have done it, but you would think it may have been some juveniles that were out in the area.”

The incident is still under investigation, Chance said.