Fort Bragg soldier's home ransacked while he was in Afghanistan

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A young Army sergeant returned from Afghanistan only to find that thieves took almost everything in his house, while he was fighting terrorists. (WTVD)

Sgt. Ted Peplinski couldn't wait to get back home from Afghanistan. He returned last week, and when he walked back into his home he was sickened by what he saw.

"Everything was gone," said the 82nd Airborne Sgt. "My fridge, my washer, dryer, stove, everything was missing."

Peplinski says every room was ransacked. What could be taken was.

"They entered my home, went through my stuff. I felt like it's a violation of my privacy, and then they came back and stole my car," he said, of his 2004 Ford Mustang that he had left parked in the driveway.

While he was in Afghanistan fighting terrorists, thieves back home cleaned him out. He says they literally took everything but the kitchen sink.

A neighbor, who kept his eye on the soldier's home, says he believes the thieves snuck in through a backyard privacy fence, and backed a trailer to the back door. Neighbor Aaron Willis says the crime has left him and other neighbors jumpy.

"I feel like when I go to work, am I going to come back and see if my stuff is still inside the house, or it's going to be gone," Willis said.

Peplinski says insurance will pay for some of his stolen property. He is relying on friends and family for help.

For now, he is staying in the barracks at Fort Bragg.

"I have an insecure feeling," Peplinski said. "I mean I do not want to put new stuff in there right now, just to have it stolen later."

Neighbors say the crime is an outrage. After two combat tours in Afghanistan, Peplinski doesn't want revenge. He just hopes what has happened to him is a lesson for others. He doesn't want the same thing to happen to them. He is a true American hero who cares more for his fellow man, than himself.

Anyone who wants to help or make a donation to Sgt. Peplinski is welcome to send me an email at greg.barnes@abc11.com, and I will pass on the information.

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