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Returning your call

Why haven't others been prosecuted in theft of copper?

Why haven't others been prosecuted in theft of copper?

August 22, 2008

Editor's Note: Each Friday, Herald-Mail reporters and editors will answer some of the questions that are called in by readers to Mail Call. Consider this us returning your call.

Why haven't others been prosecuted in theft of copper?



Q: Why was only one person charged in connection with city employees being told to strip copper wire. Who are the others, and why haven't they been prosecuted?"

- Hagerstown

A: City Finance Director Alfred Martin said municipal departments commonly sell scrap metal that is collected during projects and return the proceeds to the city.

In this case, the problem wasn't that the wire was stripped, but that a city employee kept the proceeds. That employee pleaded guilty to one count of felony theft scheme involving more than $7,000 in cash from the sale of copper wire from work sites in 2006-07.

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No one else was prosecuted because it was other employees who informed the police about the situation.

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