Residents Say They're Scared

By: Stan Torgerson
By: Stan Torgerson

Mack Harper, representing a group of Lauderdale County residents, told county supervisors the shooting started when one of the residents was in front of her home videotaping speeders.

"We're standing out in her yard and a car is speeding by and slams on brakes down the road and then sticks a scope with a rifle out of the window and shoots at us," said Harper. "I have to grab my wife and put her behind a sweet gum tree to keep her from getting hit and myself."

Harper charged there is major drug manufacturing taking place in the Alamucha-Whynot area and he said the shooters were probably drug dealers angry at being videotaped.

"And it's all because of the drug dealing that's going on out there that's been reported, I understand, because I asked questions after I got shot at," said Harper.

Harper said until the problem is solved, nobody is safe.

"You've got people who can't let their kids play in the yard. You got ladies here who get the windows shot out of their houses," said Harper. "What's it going to take, someone out there to get shot and killed?"

But Sheriff Billy Sollie said there has been more drug dealers arrested in that area during the past two years than ever before. He agreed something happened out there Saturday but said they could find no hard evidence as to what it was.

"We had deputies respond there this weekend," Sollie said. "The description of the car was brown, possibly Cavalier, no tag. The witnesses disagree on how many people were in the vehicle. I believe the deputies responded, could not find a bullet hole in any house this weekend. No windows shot out. In fact, Ms. Segars, we have responded to her home in the last 16 months 36 times."

But resident Dawn Cooper insists it happened as Harper had described it, with serious negative effect.

"And now because of this, this child right here is traumatized, cannot sleep at night. Cries for either me or Alicia or his mama," said Cooper.

The supervisors promised to urge the Drug Task Force to increase its surveillance in the area. Sheriff Sollie said his deputies will continue to respond to any call from that area.


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