For the third time in a week, vandals have cut phone lines in Jones County, knocking out phone and Internet service to many customers, including Southern Miss.
The lines are being cut in the same vicinity on old Highway 15 south of Laurel. Authorities say the thieves are apparently looking for copper wiring but all they are cutting are fiber optic lines that have no resale value.
AT&T is offering a $2,500 dollar reward for the vandals who cut the wires.
Officials say this is a public safety issue since damaging phone lines could lead to a disruption in 911 service.