Forrest Co. supervisor's home burglarized, county computers stolen

Forrest Co. supervisor's home burglarized, county computers stolen
Rod Woullard/Photo credit: WDAM

FORREST COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - A burglary in the 500 block of Dumas Avenue is to blame for several missing Forrest County computers.

This residence belongs to Forrest County District 4 Supervisor Rod Woullard.

According to the Hattiesburg Police Department, a residential burglary was reported on March 22, 2016, and a report was taken.

That report detailed that there was forced entry into the home.

According to Hattiesburg Police Lt. Jon Traxler, electronics, an assortment of guns and miscellaneous jewelry, along with a computer were stolen.

"Only one of the computers was working," Woullard said. "The other was involved with the First Tee program, and had photos and things like that on it that we had been trying to get off and transfer to a newer computer."

Forrest County Board of Supervisors President David Hogan said, "I spoke to Woullard about it, I have to take it with face value and be said he reported it to authorities and was looking into adding a security system at his residence."

According to Forrest County Inventory records, Woullard has five computers under his name.

Those five devices are all Dell Computers and are listed by "Acquisition Date" on the county inventory role.

  • 12-21-2008- Dell Computer
  • 1-10-2002 - Dell Computer
  • 9-14-2011 - Dell Computer
  • 5-29-2013 - Dell Computer
  • 1-16-2004 - Dell Computer

All Forrest County Supervisors have desktop computers in their office at the Forrest County Chancery Building except Woullard.

"I just had another break-in almost a year ago, that time they didn't touch the computer," Woullard said.

A few supervisors also have laptops, including Board President, District 1 Supervisor David Hogan, District 2 Supervisor Charles Marshall and District 4 Supervisor Rod Woullard.

"I use my laptop when I go out of town, that way I can answer emails and keep up with county business if I am away from the office," Hogan said.

The board of supervisors was not made publicly aware of the stolen computers, according to Hogan.

"The board hasn't collectively discussed it in a meeting, but I have spoken to Rod about it," Hogan said. "I would think that any information on there is public record, so I don't see a concern with anything being exposed that wasn't already public record."

"I use my laptop almost as much as I use my cell phone, I use it all the time and its where I do most of my work," Woullard said.

The county email, along with other data, is backed up on servers in the Chancery Building, according to Hogan.

"It wouldn't surprise me if personal information was on everybody's computers to some extent, but the main purpose of the machines is for county business," Hogan said.

"This issue was not about a computer, they were looking for things or money, they flipped the mattresses, fixed sandwiches and went all over the house," Woullard said. "There isn't anything on any of the computers that anyone can't see its all public."

County officials have not received the police report, which they will need to remove the computers from the inventory role and to make an insurance claim.

No arrests have been made in the case, and it is still under investigation.