Crime Stoppers Crime of the Week: Copper thief does $20K worth of damage

Crime Stoppers Crime of the Week: Copper thief does $20K worth of damage

LUFKIN, TX (News Release) - We are so accustomed to being connected through our mobile phones to friends, family, work, and social media that we feel lost anytime there is a slight service interruption.

Have you recently experienced that out-of-touch feeling, had a moment where your Snapchat selfie would not send, or been left staring at three dots waiting for an iMessage reply that didn't arrive? If so, don't throw your phone or threaten to break your contract and switch providers, focus your frustration on helping Deep East Texas Crime Stoppers solve a burglary and vandalism case that might have caused your pain.

Just before 4 p.m. on  May 18, a cell site technician responded to a report of an outage at an antenna site on Leslie Lane in Lufkin. He found that the outage was due to several cut cables and missing wires. The damage appears to have been caused by an inept thief attempting to steal copper wire from equipment at the site. While looking for and stealing a couple of hundred dollars worth of copper, the thief caused the service outage and more than $20,000 in damage by cutting fiber optic cables.

The outage affected Verizon Wireless carriers, and cases like this have been seen frequently in East Texas. Kirbyville Police near Jasper are still looking for the suspects who got away with around 20,000 worth of equipment from the Jasper-Newton electric yard late last week.

If you can identify the person, or persons, responsible for this crime or similar crimes, call Deep East Texas Crime Stoppers at (936) 639-TIPS, submit a tip online at, or text keyword 639TIPS and your tip information to CRIMES - numerically, CRIMES is 274637. Crime Stoppers calls and tips are anonymous and Crime Stoppers may pay a reward if the information you provide leads to an arrest.

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