It seems a "Toys for Tots" load meant for one county was intercepted by scam artists before delivery.
Last week we found the Little Rock office for Empowerment Ministries empty and the phones disconnected.
We thought the non-profit was out-of-business.
Also last week two women...Angela Walls and Nikki Outlaw...picked up a load of toys from the marines intended for Lee County.
"It was Empowerment Ministries," says Pat Audrisch, one of the organizers of the Lee County Toys for Tots effort. "But we did not know those people and had never heard of the group at all working in the Lee County area."
Walls and Outlaw came back twice for more toys but were turned away.
Empowerment Ministries registered with the Secretary of State as a non-profit in August.
The woman listed as registered agent is Angela Walls.
We visited the home of an Angela Walls...now Angela Bland...in North Little Rock.
She explained to us that she had never heard of Empowerment Ministries or Nikki Outlaw and that she had nothing to do with the toys wrongfully claimed from the Toys for Tots drive.
"I didn't pick up anything," explained Walls.
"You didn't pick up any toys? You didn't sign for any toys?"
"No," replied Walls.
"This county is a very impoverished county and it takes lots of people and lots of organizations working together to pull off a toys for tots campaign," says Audrisch.
The folks in Mariana rallied and helped make Christmas special for 550 kids.
As for where their toys went, it is being investigated.
Listed with Angela Walls on Empowerment Ministries' incorporation papers are Michael Walls and Gloria Harris.
Air date: December 20th, 2012
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