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Somerset Police Catch Copper Thieves In The Act

By: Phil Peneleton Email
By: Phil Peneleton Email

It just after 5 o'clock Monday when police were called to Reservoir Knob, just north of Somerset. The officer found two men. One of them was inside a fence where he wasn't allowed, next to a cell phone tower.

“It's obvious they were up to no good,” said Somerset Police Det. Shannon Smith.

Police suspected that Justin Wesley and Brandon Hyden were there to steal copper.

“Cell phone towers are commonly the victim of copper theft,” said Det. Smith.

Police say after the thieves probably stole from one tower they were going after copper in the second. That's when police showed up and arrested them.

But police couldn't find any evidence of copper stolen on Monday.

But that changed Tuesday when investigators returned. They found 3 copper bars in the grass a few feet from one of the tower. Each bar is worth a lot of money.

“At the very least $1,000, so I'm sure it will cost them more to replace this. Put this tower back functioning,” said Smith.

Wesley and Hyden were initially charged with criminal trespassing, but with evidence of an actual theft found, police say they could face more serious charges now.


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