Grapeland PD: City worker stole copper from maintenance shop

Grapeland PD: City worker stole copper from maintenance shop

GRAPELAND, TX (KTRE) - A city worker turned himself in to the Grapeland Police Department after he allegedly took copper wiring and tubing from the city's maintenance shop.

Michael Buckingham is still being held in the Houston County Jail on a third-degree felony theft charge. His bail was set at $3,000.

Grapeland Police Chief Chuck Franklin said that Buckingham worked for the city's street department. Buckingham took copper tubing and wiring on several occasions, Franklin said.

Franklins said that Buckingham eventually got to the point where he felt bad about the alleged thefts and confessed.

“We didn't know, and the city superintendent didn't know it was missing until it went missing,” Franklin said.

James Wylie, Grapeland's city superintendent is doing an inventory to see what is missing. Franklin said he is unsure of the value of the copper that was stolen from the maintenance shop.

“[Buckingham's] job status will be decided by the mayor and the city superintendent,” Franklin said.

The Grapeland chief said once they get an idea of the amount of copper that was stolen, the charge might be downgraded to a state-jail felony.

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