AT&T Offers $5,000 Reward to Stop Brazen Thefts of its Copper Wire from Utility Poles

Categories: Crime-iny

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AT&T ... that ... the company ... reward ... Anaheim ... copper ... arrests.

Oops, sorry, lemme get out of that cell hole. ... AT&T announced Monday that the company is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever has been stealing the network's copper cable in Riverside and Orange County.

Can you hear me now?

Most of the OC thefts have been in the Anaheim area, according to a spokeswoman, who adds there have been more than 20 "attacks" on the AT&T network since May in both counties.

Thieves are generally cutting and removing copper cable from utility poles, some in broad daylight while dressed as telecommunications workers. "Residents should be aware that all official AT&T vehicles display the company logo, in contrast to the modes of transportation used by the suspected thieves," reads an AT&T statement. "Likewise, all AT&T employees possess company issued photo identification."

Besides being a pain in the ass to the real honest to goodness crew members who must replace the cables, it's been a pain in the ass to customers who have lost service. It has the potential to prove deadly as emergency calls for police, fire or medical assistance could be effected.

"AT&T takes this matter very seriously," Jim Clark, director of AT&T's Core Installation and Maintenance for Riverside and Orange County, says in the statement. "We're hoping the reward will motivate people to be alert and to pay close attention to any suspicious individuals who appear to be working on, or trying to cut down AT&T network cables. We are working with law enforcement to ensure those responsible are apprehended and prosecuted."

Anyone who thinks they can claim the award is asked to call 1.800.807.4205. If you see a cable theft in progress, you are asked to also contact your local law enforcement agency.

Email: mcoker@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!



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8 comments
JGlanton
JGlanton topcommenter

They need to take down whoever is buying stolen wire and creating a market for these thieves. There can't be that many scrap wire buyers with priors in the shire.

René Bruce
René Bruce

Karma is a Bitch !!! They been raping people on DSL that is slow for years !!!

Dave Siebert
Dave Siebert

AT&T..,the Corporate Death Star.They deserve to get jacked !

vegandawg23
vegandawg23 topcommenter

@JGlanton It's wire. How's the buyer to know it's stolen? Not like it's an illegal applying for a job and you can easily investigate to determine the worker is not a citizen or a stolen bike with a serial number that can be investigated. It's wire. 

JGlanton
JGlanton topcommenter

@vegandawg23  Wire has markings, codes, mfgr name, and very specific types for specific uses. And when it's in bulk, and it's used, and is special outdoor telecom transmission wire, it's obviously stolen and not from Home Depot. Yes, I know the buyer can claim stupidity for not knowing the source and not knowing the criminals, but he'd be a liar. It shouldn't be too hard to sting him.

vegandawg23
vegandawg23 topcommenter

@JGlanton @vegandawg23 Don't think they sell it to wire vendors. Think they sell it to recyclers. Why should they care when it's just gonna be melted down ? I used to work in a used book/music/videogame store similar to book off. There would be these white thuggish gangster wannabes who came in every other day with a bunch of brand new videogames to sell to us. Where are a bunch of gangster wannabes gonna get new videogames multiple times a week? Obviously stolen. I couldn't say to them, "Hey maan, these are stolen. We can't buy them from you." as I have no evidence/proof. We made money on these games and I'm not a cop/investigator. Same thing here. You can buy outdoor telecom wire say at a surplus auction. How's the recycle facility owner to know the thieves didn't buy from a surplus auction? He's supposed to investigate every piece of wire, pipes, used catalytic converters, manhole covers that come into the place?!? He'd be tracking down crap like that all day if he started doing that. 

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