County To Crackdown On Metal Thefts

By: Michel Mason Email
By: Michel Mason Email

Metal thieves are cashing in on anything they can get their hands on and officials in one Eastern Kentucky county say enough is enough.

Pike County Judge Executive Wayne T. Rutherford says the problem is getting out of hand. In some cases, he says these thieves are putting lives at risk.

"There's no way that any one agency can fight this fight alone. We have to have everybody involved," said Kentucky State Police Trooper Scott Hopkins.

The state police post in Pikeville says it investigates an average of 10 metal or copper thefts each month. That's aside from the dozens of similar complaints to the sheriff's office and city police departments.

Judge Rutherford says he and other law enforcement officials across the county are so concerned about the problem, he's contacted the Attorney General to see what action can be taken outside of state laws already in place.

"Since the legislature is not in session, anything that we can come up with that we can pass a local county ordinance, a county law and see if we can't stop this," added Judge Rutherford.

He says many scrap dealers refuse to accept stolen metal - like drainage grates, guardrails and copper.

"But there's some of them evidently are not. Somewhere, someplace they're taking this metal and we got to figure out who it is. Who's the bad apples," said Judge Rutherford.

He wants thieves and buyers to know they won't get by with stripping metal for long.

On Monday, Judge Rutherford hopes to meet with the Pike County Sheriff, state police and both the county and commonwealth's attorneys to discuss what they can do about metal thefts.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Sandy Location: Pike on Sep 11, 2008 at 06:39 PM
    Why don't they outlaw even the purchasing of any copper & metal anywhere. That will stop the whole situation. Or make one central place that it can be purchased in the whole state and it be monitored with cameras and get lots of id. If they have to put forth a little effort, because I'm sure that the majority of the stealing is done by the lazy bums that they give SSI to (that aren't supposed to be able to work but can do anything else they want). I even heard on the radio they were going to put some kind of chemical that will rub off on a person's hand if they try to steal it. Why tell it. Now all they have to do is wear gloves and covering then toss it. The government is so dumb to tell it, but it is probably the news media that thinks that everyone should know every little thing. Quit giving these people a slap on the hand when they do get caught. Put them in jail for a long time.
  • by Donna Location: Hindman on Sep 11, 2008 at 12:35 PM
    Let's see here a large chunk of metal for a pill(that's about the way it plays out).
  • by Bill Location: Pike on Sep 11, 2008 at 04:30 AM
    So now only the frends of the Boss Hoggs will get away with making money on metal.That should help HUH=These metal theif's are doing a great job of cleaning up the County!!Something the County hasn't been able to do.

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