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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  • by victim of the burg Location: parkersburg wv on Jun 16, 2012 at 04:27 PM
    I HATE A THIEVES. my car was stolen last week and totaled in another state and let me tell ya if i could get my hands on them they wouldnt have to worry about the law. however to go to a church and steal is even more rediculous then stealing the only car a poor girl has to her name. i wish they would catch them all through them in a cell and forget about them. after all they seem to forget what they have done to us. put them in a hot cell with no food or water forever. they will need a air conditioner for where their going.
  • by SANTANA MOSS Location: FLORIDA on Jun 16, 2012 at 06:06 AM
    When I am not playing in the NFL for the Redskins, I am developing new security devices to help prevent crime, Our product TheAcContact works with your security system, and will dispatch the police if your units are tampered with again. Companies will tell you cameras are the solution, But what if they wear a mask? Others will say cages, What if the criminal has a hacksaw? The above mentioned devices don’t call anyone while you’re a/c is being stolen Our systems works with any companies security system. www.TheAcContact.com Call us or have your Air Conditioning or Security Company call us for more information. Santana Moss 1-866-620-0513
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jun 17, 2012 at 01:39 PM in reply to SANTANA MOSS
      I was told that personal cameras are sort of useless. If YOU video someone stealing from your house it can't be used in court and the police basically ignore it. It sounds like you may be on to a good idea Santana.
  • by MineralWells_bob Location: Mineral Wells on Jun 15, 2012 at 04:08 PM
    A couple of thoughts here: 1) SOmeone knows about this. whether its the scrap yeard operators or the family members of the crooks who are wondering where all the extra money is coming from! 2) Security cages. I wonder why no one has thought to places a large bolted security cage around these units making them extremely difficult to remove. 3) Alarm systems. Surely there has to be a way to put an alarm system on these units. 4) Banks use secret packs of money that release an unwashable dye that explodes all over a robbers skin and clothes. Can't something like this be put into these units.
  • by kenny Location: parkersburg on Jun 15, 2012 at 03:57 PM
    if that same person came to your church and ask you for 30 -80 $ what would you do,and if you gave ,would there be conditions ?
  • by mauldawg Location: Parkersburg on Jun 15, 2012 at 12:03 PM
    To nobody- If you showed up once a week,maybe you would see what many churches do for others.We dont run out in the street telling everyone what we do to help others.Thats not the way it works.
  • by nobody on Jun 15, 2012 at 08:45 AM
    What do these churches do for the community? Do they feed the poor? Do they provide shelter for the homeless? Do they help the sick with their medical bills? Can someone please explain to me how just bothering to show up at a building once a week somehow makes you a good person?
    • reply
      by wow on Jun 15, 2012 at 11:40 AM in reply to nobody
      Actually yes, churches do all of those things
    • reply
      by Patriot on Jun 16, 2012 at 03:44 AM in reply to nobody
      Nobody..Unfortunately you must have no clue...Go find out...then base your opinion on that..You will be surprised what the church does. No, going to church does not make you a bad person, but It does give you the foundation and the ability to become a better person based on the Word of God. Go visit a true bible believing church and see for yourself..God bless.
    • reply
      by victim of the burg on Jun 16, 2012 at 04:30 PM in reply to nobody
      it doesnt matter what the church does or doesnt do for you. i was raised not to touch other peoples things that dont belong to me. and yes the churchs do help many people in need in fact they have helped me more then i could ever tell you. whats wrong with you low lives getting a job and supporting yourselves? to lazy? its just easier to steal from others isnt it? theres a place for people like u all. down below where it never gets cold.
  • by MrMint Location: Ohio on Jun 15, 2012 at 08:31 AM
    Metal theft is a serious crime because it destroys thousands of dollars of equipment for a little bit of recycling value and it preys on the trust of society. We can't watch everything, everywhere to make sure it is not stolen. Metal theft should be a major felony as it is the tip of another crime problem and it is hard to catch these thieves.
    • reply
      by victim of the burg on Jun 16, 2012 at 04:35 PM in reply to MrMint
      yea and stealing a car and taking it out of the state of wv and totaling it is to. i hope he/she feels good about stealing my only wheels i own and just destroying it in a few hrs. i drove that car for 6 years and never had a problem with it and someone thats to lazy to get a JOB had to come along and tear it up. JUDGEMENT day will come for these people it just makes me sick.
  • by skunk Location: parkersburg wv on Jun 15, 2012 at 08:07 AM
    thought of the day=Most people out there do not know of the law that EPA has that if you allow feron to go into the air it is a $27,500.00 fine on each time it is done and a $10,000.00 bounty for the person that turns them in and if they are convicted.....so if they catch these people they need to charge them with this on each count and charge them with failure to recover the feron and no feron cert too....if they took 10 units and release the feron,the fine could be $275,000.00 dollars beside the stealing charges that they could be charged with too...just have to have a few souls get hit with that..... I went to school and took testing to get all my cert's. this i why i know about the EPA fines that can be imposed on you.....you need to get ahold of the law enforcement people and ask them if they will be also charge with this.....you can take there home and cars/trucks and there personal property and place a lien against them...
  • by Jeremy Location: Parkersburg on Jun 15, 2012 at 05:00 AM
    They Stole all four units from Faith Gospel Church as well. If anyone knows anything about it please inform local law enforcement alot of folks out our way will really appreciate it.
    • reply
      by victim of the burg on Jun 16, 2012 at 04:36 PM in reply to Jeremy
      same here if anyone knows who stole my car i have a reward out for the arrest and conviction of them.
  • by Patriot Location: ohio on Jun 15, 2012 at 02:13 AM
    Sad.Very sad...this is just the way our country is headed..People have no value for anything sacred or other peoples property. Even though there has been a "war on drugs" for 30 years it is only worse..We are not conquering the beast within. Things must change.
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