Caught On Cam Mississippi Twister

Wednesday, May 4, 2011 - 9:20am

Police security cameras catch devastating tornado from several angles.

Video released Tuesday shows the moments before a powerful tornado destroyed most Smithville, Mississippi.

The footage came from a video system at the Smithville Police Department.

"It's just like I saw it. It was devastating," said Chief Darwin Hathcock, when asked what went through his mind after watching the video for the first time.

The system had four cameras, which were powered by battery after the electricity went out.

One camera pointed outside got the twister as it was heading up Highway 25.

It's obvious the tornado is massive.

Another camera inside showed the chief, three other employees, a woman and two children all moving into another room to take shelter.

Those employees included the chief's son and brother.

"We had a desk in there, and I had the lady to put herself and her two children up under the desk," said Hathock. "The rest of us just huddled up in the room there."

A camera on the front room of the police department captured flying debris.

Another camera outside recorded the carport where two police cars were parked being picked up by the strong wind.

While everyone inside survived, they did not make it through unscathed.

The police chief suffered a black eye.

"My son, it pulled his shoulder out of place," said Hathcock. "He's having a lot of problems with it. We're just bruised from head to toe but nothing major...We're just blessed to be here."

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