Copper thieves targeting concentrated area in Craighead County

CRAIGHEAD COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - The Craighead County Sheriff's Department is stepping up patrols in one area of the county after multiple thefts over the past year.

The 900 series of county roads North of Lake City has become the hot spot for copper thieves for the past ten to twelve months, according to Craighead County Investigator, Justin Rolland.

"We constantly receive reports for copper wire thefts," Rolland told Region 8 News.

The copper wiring is being stolen from pivot systems, farming equipment vital to irrigating farmers fields. Rolland said one farmer has been hit multiple times over the past year, racking up the cost of damages.

"Not only is the copper wire being replaced, the brackets, any clamps, things like that...the labor involved," Rolland explained. "When you add up the costs of all the thefts that've occurred, we're reaching $100,000."

Rolland said now, deputies are stepping up patrols in the area, as well as keeping in touch with metal recycling places in the area.

"There are instances where these individuals take the copper wire across state lines," Rolland said, "but we're in contact with places in other states as well so we're making headway with that."

Rolland said neighbors keeping their eyes peeled will help too.

"They may see something that's out of place or not in the normal setting and if that occurs, then we'd like for them to contact us," Rolland said.

So if you see anything suspicious, he suggests calling the sheriff's department or local police.

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