CENTERBURG — Between 20 to 40 shots were heard in Centerburg in early November that caused a power outage giving students a three-day weekend. 

On Nov. 11, a Licking County Sheriff’s Office deputy was dispatched to 15150 Clover Valley Rd., around 1:45 a.m. on reported shots fired at an AEP substation. Johnstown’s police department was on the scene too, according to the police report’s narrative. 

The caller, a Centerburg resident, stated he heard approximately 20 to 40 shots. 

Once the deputy arrived, he was shown casings that appeared to be .308 caliber rounds from a high-powered rifle, which were marked and photographed, according to authorities. 

The Johnstown police officer and Licking County Sheriff’s deputy searched the substation and assessed the damages. The estimated value of the damages are unknown at this time. 

The deputy entered the gated part of the facility to photograph the damages. Authorities reported several pieces of electrical infrastructure damaged and destroyed from being shot. Several bullet holes were located throughout the facility, indicating the shots came from both the south and the east side of the facility. 

When asked about surveillance, the deputy was told by AEP employees the only camera on site was inside the building. 

“While investigating this incident, I heard approximately four to five more shots in the distance toward the north/northeast,” the narrative reads. “I notified dispatch and they advised me that there were reports from Knox County about a similar incident.

“Furthermore, two other locations were vandalized by gunfire in the nearby Licking County area on Bennington Chapel Road. These locations were damaged in the same manner, with a .308 caliber rifle.” 

The power went out around 1:30 a.m., Centerburg Supt. Ryan Gallwitz said, and didn’t come back on until 8:30 a.m. 

Due to the outage and an unknown restoration timeframe, Gallwitz made the decision to close school, he said.

The substation shooting is currently under investigation, according to the report. 

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