Thieves strike Cresson; copper stolen from city

Cooper wire continues to be a popular item with thieves.

One of the latest instances occurred last weekend when the city of Cresson suffered equipment losses and damages worth $40,000.

Cresson Mayor Bob Cornett said the incident, which also affected a cell phone tower base within the same fenced-in work yard next to City Hall, appeared to have been executed by skilled thieves.

“We think they came to strip the wire out of our place,” Cornett said, noting that the thieves smashed into a conduit that contained six large wires.

He said that sort of job wouldn’t be easy and would require a wench truck to pull out the wire.

Those wires had seven strands, each about 120 feet long, Cornett said.

Replacement Cost

The replacement cost for those wires will probably be $4 per foot.

The cell phone tower, which is not affiliated with the city, serves several companies, including AT&T, according to Cornett.

“They said they’ve had (wire theft) problems all over,” Cornett said.

Cornett said that the thieves apparently knew to stay away from a live wire that comes into the yard from a United Coop transformer.

“It’s enough to kill you,” Cornett said of the voltage.

Cresson’s relatively new 125-kilowatt generator, which operates the nearby wastewater treatment plant, was broken.

Repairs, however, were made quickly.

“We had crews here at 8 a.m. Monday, and they put it all back together by 4 p.m.,” Cornett said.

The incident was discovered Sunday afternoon, Cornett said.

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