Vandals Use Sword, Ax To Destroy Elderly Couple's Home
By Adam Ghassemi
MONTEREY, Tenn. – Lonnie Davis was supposed to be in Florida. He spends the winters there with his wife every year, but this February he was unexpectedly back in town.
"Just terrible. Terrible," he said while touring his home.
Davis said they got a large January electric bill for the home and knew something was wrong from hundreds of miles away. They sent a friend to check things out who found all the lights on and the house completely ransacked.
"Not that they wanted it. It's just the fact that they're destroying it," he said.
Police believe three people broke into an unconnected addition behind Davis' home and used an ax to cut their way inside. While trashing the place they even used his ceremonial Marine Corps sword to slice through ceiling fans, light fixtures and drywall.
Monterey Police Detective Michael Phillips said the trio then made their way into the garage and covered Davis' car with transmission fluid, pesticide and paint before dumping nails and screws on the hood.
He's never seen anything like it.
"The purpose, I believe, was probably just for fun," Phillips said.
The thieves left a lot more behind than bleach on the floor, and a mess in the kitchen. TVs and other electronics remain. They're preparing to charge three boys, ages 11, 12 and 14, for stealing a few items and smashing nearly everything the Davis family had.
"We knew right away that this was most likely juvenile vandals," Phillips added.
Their identities were not released.
Police figured out the identities of the three boys when one of their parents came forward after finding some of the stolen items from Davis' home. Things like jewelry and coins were stolen, but most have been recovered.
All of the boys will face criminal charges.
"The explanation was kind of the same across the board. We did it just to be doing it," Phillips said.
But even with such a big mess to clean-up, Davis can laugh about now having to fix what kids he doesn't even know tore up.
"Tearing up what you've spent a lot of years building," he said. "I say they ought to do them like they do in China and take them out and cane them."
There is still word on how much it'll cost to fix or replace everything, but it will likely be in the thousands.