Arrests Made in Amish Robberies

April 21, 2017
by Staff Reports

From Lawrence County Sheriff:

On April 17, 2017, authorities with the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department were dispatched to the area of Ethridge, TN, in reference to two alleged robberies which had taken place involving the Amish community. One incident was reported in the area of Yoder Road and the other in the area of Oaks Road. In both incidences, members of the Amish Community were traveling on the roadway by the means of horse and buggy. A truck, believed to be a Ford F150, blocked the roadway in each incident and a passenger emerged with a handgun demanding money. The first victim was robbed for approximately one hundred dollars. In the other incident, the Amish fled in the buggy and a shot was fired as they did so. No one was injured and the Amish made it back to their residence where 911 was contacted. The truck was described as a late ninety’s or early two thousand model Ford F150, possible red in color. The assailants were wearing masks to cover their face.

On April 20, 2017, arrests were made concerning the above events. An investigation by the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department Criminal Investigation Division in cooperation with the Giles County Sheriff’s Department Criminal Investigation led authorities to gather enough evidence to charge three people in the crimes. Acey Taylor McDougal (18) of Ethridge, TN, was charged with aggravated robbery, two counts of attempted aggravated robbery, and three counts of aggravated assault and is being held on a $120,000 bond. Amber Leighann Lawrence (18) of Ethridge, TN, was charged with aggravated robbery, two counts of attempted aggravated robbery, and three counts of aggravated assault and is being held on a $120,000 bond. Johnathan Lee Casteel (23) of Ethridge, TN, was charged with aggravated robbery, two counts of attempted aggravated robbery, and three counts of aggravated assault and is being held on a $380,000 bond. Casteel’s bond was higher due to him being out on bond for a number of mailbox vandalisms he had recently been arrested for in Ethridge. All three subjects will face additional charges in Giles County for an Amish robbery which happened in the edge of their jurisdiction.

Sheriff Jimmy Brown would like to thank the citizens of Lawrence and Giles Counties who offered info over the past three days. The success of this investigation was based on the cooperation of the community and the Lawrence and Giles County Sheriff’s Departments.

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