Theft, Fire Leave Youth Football Team Without Gear

Posted at 5:42 PM, Jul 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-05 20:40:11-04

Directors with the Charlotte Lions Pro Junior Football team were left scrambling after losing all of its equipment over the Fourth of July weekend. 

Football and city officials said a trailer filled with the team's pads and helmets was taken from the director's property on Highway 46 Saturday night. 

The trailer had been left there for the past six months. "It's just a shame someone would do this," Jimmy Murphy, Charlotte Lions' former director said.

The black trailer has no logo of the team but directors say the lock appeared to have been picked. The equipment costs between $20-25,000. 

"They can keep the trailer, we just want our equipment back," Murphy urged.

No more than a day later, a fire at a BBQ pit at Charlotte Ball Park destroyed the building including the team's test dummies and blocking sleds. 

The BBQ pit was being used as part of a fundraiser for local state tournament bound teams before it caught on fire. 

There were no injuries sustained during the fire. "It's kind of ironic that it all happened at once," Murphy mentioned. "We totally lost everything."

The incidents over the weekend left the team in a financial bind. Practice was set to start in two weeks, and players only have their jerseys.

"They need to return the stuff because it's a lot of money and we may not be able to play football this year," a 10-year-old Lions player told NewsChannel 5. "It's going to make us all sad."

The team planned to host a yard and bake sale Saturday, July 9 at Murphy's Cee Bee in Charlotte at 8 p.m.

You can donate to the team by clicking on this link