Thieves 'drilling holes' in car gas tanks at Monroe Co. churches, officials say

MONROE COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Investigators in Monroe County say they have received multiple complaints of gas being stolen from vehicles while at churches in the area.

Car's gas tank / Source: WVLT News

The sheriff's office posted a release on the office Facebook page, saying they would be increasing security at the churches over the next few weeks.

"Thieves are drilling holes in the bottom of the tanks and draining the fuel," the sheriff's office said. Some churches said their vans and buses have also been hit.

The Westside Baptist Church in Madisonville said none of their cars were targeted, but they ran into a problem when trying to borrow another church's vans, which were out of commission due to gas thefts.

"Two churches we tried to borrow from; we weren't able to," Pastor Dwight Torbett said. "It's depressing. But all the churches here, all they had to do was ask, and we'd give it to them. You don't have to take it."

Westside Baptist has installed security cameras and has people monitor parking lots during church service. The congregation is preaching frustration, but forgiveness.

"I pray for them. That's what they need. I pray for them," Pastor Torbett said.

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