Ohio Leads Country in Metal Thefts

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Some troubling news for Ohio authorities.

The Buckeye State leads the nation in copper theft.

The state reported more than 4,000 claims between 2011 and 2013 from homes and businesses.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office says metal theft remains a big problem here at home, calling it a reflection of the drug epidemic.

Authorities say addicts are stealing copper and brass, taking the metal to scrapyards, selling it and using the money to buy drugs.

"If there's copper lying around in an abandoned house, sooner or later, somebody is going to drive by and try to take it," says Washington County Sheriff Larry Mincks. "The price of copper is up. And it's a good price for people and they can make some good money."

Sheriff Mincks says a new state law this summer should make it easier for investigators to track thieves.

The law requires anyone selling metal to scrapyards to provide more forms of identification.

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