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Man arrested after selling donated items to tornado victims

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RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- A Raleigh man has been arrested and accused of asking homeowners with tornado-damaged property to pay him for donated items.

WRAL-TV reported that William Shannon Coble is charged with obtaining property under false pretenses. Police say Coble asked homeowners to pay for tarps and repair work donated by Samaritan's Purse. Police say at least one homeowner signed a contract to pay Coble for tarps and labor.

Police say Coble obtained the donations by telling officials at Samaritan's Purse that he owned four houses damaged when tornadoes swept through Raleigh on April 16.

Samaritan's Purse representatives say their help was intended to be free and no contract was required.

Coble says he was just trying to help people who couldn't afford tarps.

It was unclear if Coble has an attorney.

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Information from: WRAL-TV, http://www.wral.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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