Burglars targeting tornado victims

By: Andy Cunningham Email
By: Andy Cunningham Email

For one family, it made an already bad situation, even worse. Still trying to recover after a tornado destroyed their West Liberty home they became the victim of thieves.

Police say some people stole what few remaining possessions Scott & Eva Kemplin had left.

"It's really a shame that someone would steal period, but under these circumstances, I believe they're even lower," said Scott Kemplin.

Kemplin says he witnessed two unknown females trespassing on his tornado damaged property on Monday. A short time later Kentucky State Police arrested Marsha Risner, 35, and charged her with Burglary, Possession of Burglary Tools, and Public Intoxication.

Police say a scrapyard obtained her information after Risner sold the tornado-damaged property to a local scrapyard.

"It's hard for me to believe people would sink this low," Mr. Kemplin said.

Before the thefts, the Kemplin's story inspired several local businesses, Suff's Furniture, Qdoba's Palomar and Tiverton locations and all eight Orange Leaf locations in Kentucky to contribute 10% of Tuesday's sales to help the Kemplin family rebuild their home.

"We weren't expecting this," Scott said. "But we are so appreciative, more than anyone will ever know."

The Kemplin's say this kind of generosity is what's helping them move forward.

"We just feel so blessed to have our lives," said Eva Kemplin. "And to think people we don't even know, want to help us, means the world to us."

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