Equipment stolen from volunteer fire department, suspects seen on surveillance video

BLACKSBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – After more than 10 years as a volunteer fireman, Antioch Fire Chief Lucas McDaniel remains passionate about serving his community.

“You’re trying to do what’s right by your community,” he said. “Just the thought of being able to help somebody in a way that nobody else can.”

Now he says that help may take longer after a medical bag, and ropes used in rescues were stolen.

antioch-volunteer-fire-department-2“If you were to have a car wreck down an embankment – either to help us get to you or to help you get out,” he said.

He says the ropes are valued at more than $10,000, and the medical bag about $1,000.

“You already barely have enough money to buy everything you want to buy everything you want to take care of everybody.”

He says now — they’d have to contact a neighboring department for help if the ropes were needed.

“You’ll have a delayed response because of course they’re farther away so ultimately it’s hurting the community.”

This wasn’t the first theft there; thieves broke in earlier this year as well.

“They took all the power equipment.”

This time the suspects were caught on tape, though they tried to avoid that by spray painting one of the outdoor cameras.

“It’s very frustrating,” said Chief McDaniel. “It disgusts me because this is a volunteer department. We all have families, we all have jobs, but we still take the time out of our life to do the right thing for the community.”

Now he hopes the community will help put these suspects behind bars.

Chief McDaniel says they’re working to see if their insurance covers the cost of the stolen equipment. If you have information on this theft you’re to contact Captain Daniel Ward with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office at 864-489-4722 or Crime stoppers at 864-489 CRIM (2746).

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