Police Investigate Attempted $12K Copper Theft

Placeholder image

KISSIMMEE, Fla., Dec. 20, 2006 – Thieves overnight attempted to steal 1,056 feet of copper cable from a Kissimmee Utility Authority warehouse facility in Osceola County.

The thieves cut a large opening in a perimeter security fence, cut the lock and chain to a second fence, commandeered a forklift and attempted to steal a 4,500-pound spool of copper cable. As the thieves exited the facility the front tires of the forklift became lodged in soft sand. The thieves secured a nearby motorized utility cart in an attempt to free the forklift, but were unsuccessful.

As a last-ditch effort, it appears the thieves used hand saws to cut some of the cable off the spool, but again were unsuccessful. Because of the severity of the cable cuts, however, the spool (valued at $12,000) was a total loss.

A security alarm at the facility was triggered at 3 a.m. Wednesday and was investigated by KUA and Kissimmee Police Department personnel, but no visible signs of tampering were discovered at that time.

KUA and KPD officials are currently reviewing video surveillance tapes to gather additional evidence.

Theft of copper wire has been on the rise for several years as copper prices have skyrocketed.

Founded in 1901, KUA (www.kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility providing electric and telecommunication services to 170,000 residents in five Central Florida counties.

# # #

Chris M. Gent
(407) 933-7777 x 1116
cgent@kua.com