TCHULA - Dr. Ronald Myers was shocked to find his medical clinic, the Myers Foundation Christian Family Health Clinic, burglarized in this small Delta town during the Christmas holidays.
He hopes it is not an indication that the town, which currently has a reduced police
presence, is now open to thieves.
"I had some missionaries with me. We gave away about 30 turkeys. That's when I found the place broken into," said Myers, 50, who came to this town of fewer than 2,200 residents some 19 years ago.
Myers, an ordained minister and medical doctor, is offering a $250 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the break-in. He said he believes it likely occurred Dec. 20 or Dec. 21.
The thieves were methodical and took their time working on one of the building's side windows, he said.
"I have metal bars over my windows. They chiseled out the bricks. These guys had enough time to chisel bricks out," Myers said.
Once inside the clinic, which has been closed and shuttered since January 2005, the thieves took two refrigerators, the clinic's phone system, a public address system, some furniture and a large quantity of sample drugs kept on hand, he said.
The sample drugs the thieves did not take were tossed around the clinic.
One of the thieves defecated in one of the clinic's examining rooms "like an animal," Myers said.
To add to his woes, Tchula's police department has been short on staff. Sharkey Ford, the former police and fire chief, was let go earlier this year.
"Our biggest concern is there is not much police presence in Tchula. What can you do with two or three officers?" the physician asked.
That's the reason behind the reward, he said.
Efforts to get a comment from Charles Washington, Tchula's deputy police chief, were unsuccessful Wednesday afternoon.
This is the first time someone has broken into the clinic, Myers said. He said Tchula merchants have also experienced similar incidents recently.
He said he hopes this isn't a sign of the future in the small town.
"In my opinion, Tchula is wide-open for this kind of stuff," Myers said.
To contact Dr. Ronald Myers, call 662-247-3364 or go online at www.myersfoundation.net.