About 38,000 people in one county in central North Carolina were without electricity Sunday morning in widespread power outages that the authorities were investigating as “a criminal occurrence.”
The outages across Moore County, roughly 90 miles east of Charlotte, began just after 7 p.m. on Saturday, the Moore County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
“As utility companies began responding to the different substations, evidence was discovered that indicated that intentional vandalism had occurred at multiple sites,” the statement said, adding that deputies had been deployed to various locations to provide “site security.”
The statement offered no additional details about what specifically had caused the outages.
In a brief telephone interview early Sunday, Richard Maness, the chief deputy of the Moore County Sheriff’s Office, called the situation “alarming” but said he could not provide more information.
“We’re really right in the middle of this thing,” he said. “I’ve got detectives spread out all over our county.”