Copper Thieves Target Local Churches

By: Mollie Lair Email
By: Mollie Lair Email

"Where they're going, if they don't change their ways, where they're going, they're going to need that air conditioning."

A recent string of copper theft from church air conditioning units has their congregations up in arms.

"Copper. The coils in an air conditioning unit for the most part of made of copper, also aluminum. And they're being stolen for their precious metals," says Wood County Sheriff Jeff Sandy.

The copper and aluminum stolen from these units just brings about $30-$80.

"And we try to work closely with the salvage yards and in fact we get print outs from them. And for the most part we've obtained their cooperation in letting us know who is bringing these part amounts of precious metals in," says Sheriff Sandy.

Over the span of just a few weeks more than 4 churches have fallen victim to these copper thefts.

"Well no ones here during the day and during the daytime who's going to expect it?" says Pleasant View Baptist Church Treasurer John Lemon.

The Pleasant View Baptist Church on Pettyville Road certainly didn't. They were the victim of copper theft just a week ago. And with temperatures rising they're starting to feel the heat.

"The heat. You know in the summer months, for the older folks it's kind of an inconvenience for them when they come to church and it's hot," says Lemon.

It's about more than the inconvenience. This is their sanctuary in more ways than one.

"No, especially not churches. This church has been here over 100 years and this is the first time we've had something stolen that we know of," says Lemon.

If you have any information regarding these thefts call the Wood County Sheriff's Office at 304-424-1834.

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