(Marshall County, MS) Marshall County Deputies call Lake Center one of the most peaceful areas of the county.
A brutal home invasion changed that.
It left a father beaten and a woman sexually assaulted, both hog-tied, and their children running next door for help.
”I called the lady down the road. She’s a dispatcher for Mississippi Highway Patrol and she told me it was a home invasion and I said what?" recalled Charlie Brown, who is, what you might call the unofficial town marshal here.
"I patrol this area and the Sheriff’s Office patrols it with me.”
Brown is a former deputy and knows his former colleagues have more than 300 square miles to cover, the third largest territory in Mississippi.
”As far as the violence we’ve had lately, as far as the homicides and the home invasion, you know, we haven’t had any of that in quite some time and we just recently had a spike of it."
Major Kelly McMillen can trace most of Marshall County’s violent crime, including a recent double murder where two men were found shot and burned in an SUV, to Tennessee.
He says criminals cross the state line for crimes of opportunity.
He wants Marshal County residents to know deputies here won’t rest until they solve their cases, ”We’re gonna be here, the Sheriff’s Department is gonna be here doing whatever it takes to get to the bottom of these situations."
Meantime, neighbors here say they’re watching out for each other a little more.