Gunshots at power lines start fires, endangering some Jackson residents

Updated: Oct. 23, 2020 at 7:30 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The sounds of gunfire are not uncommon for some Jackson residents, but for those living in more rural west Jackson it is unsettling and becoming even more dangerous.

Utility lines are being targeted, starting fires that are threatening lives and property.

Nearly two acres went up in flames on Hilda Drive when someone began shooting at power lines just days ago.

“It was the second time it happened within three days,” said Hilda Drive homeowner Ruth Ann RIgby. On October 14, Rigby heard rapid gunfire south of her home.

“They were actually shooting the power lines out and it created a fire, but the fire ended up putting itself out because of the rain that day,” said the life long street resident.

Three days later it happened again, more gunshots and a massive fire that burned trees and spread to surrounding land. Eighteen spent rounds still litter the street. Rigby’s husband, Jody, saw a white car driving away after the shots were fired.

“It’s a pattern now. It’s a pattern with them shooting out the power lines and Entergy had to come out and fix the power pole,” said Ruth Ann Rigby. “There were over 1,200 people without power."

Jackson firefighters from the Medgar Evers station battled the blaze for over two hours. The flames were about half a mile from Rigby’s home.

“It’s very much a concern, but it’s also a pattern,” she added. “What are they training for? What are they training? You’re shooting at power lines. What else do you want to go shoot?"

Residents in the quiet, rural area said they’ve been hearing rounds fired from an assault type rifle for at least a year. The danger and threat to their lives are disturbing. They are more concerned because no arrests have been made.

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