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Opposing team victims of theft at Vidalia High

VIDALIA — Vidalia police are investigating a reported theft at Vidalia High School after personal items belonging to the Vikings’ Friday night opponents were reported missing.

Assistant Chief Bruce Wiley said the principal of Caldwell Parish High School reported personal items of the school’s football players missing at approximately 8:35 p.m. Friday.

Chief Arthur K. Lewis said the police department did not have its usual number of officers patrolling the campus during the game.

“Due to the city’s recent financial situation, I was forced to make cutbacks in personnel and reduce or eliminate overtime,” Lewis said. “This resulted in us not having the number of officers we normally have to patrol the entire campus during games, not just inside the stadium.”

Lewis said he will be talking with Mayor Hyram Copeland and the Vidalia aldermen to determine the best way to increase staffing to prevent similar incidents in the future.

No suspects have been identified, Wiley said. Anyone with any information about the theft is asked to contact VPD at 318-336-5254.