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Mo. National Guard releases records on soldiers who looted in Joplin

(UPI/Tom Uhlenbrock)
An aerial view shows the destruction of the Home Depot in Joplin, Mo. on May 24, 2011. The tornado that hit Joplin on May 22 claimed 161 lives. The Home Depot has since been rebuilt.

The Missouri National Guard reports four of its soldiers stole electronics from a Wal-Mart store while helping recovery efforts after last year's tornado in Joplin.

The Guard released records on the incident to the Joplin Globe on Tuesday after refusing to release them last week, claiming it was exempt from the state's open records law.

The Globe reports that the Guard said three specialists and a sergeant admitted taking electronics such as video games and a camera. The Guard did not release the soldiers' names.

They were part of a team of 16 soldiers assigned to help after the Walmart was destroyed by the tornado, which killed 161 people.

An investigating officer recommended the soldiers be demoted but the records do not indicate what punishment they received.

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