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Copper stolen from Virginia Avenue house

February 07, 2011|By DAVE MCMILLION | davem@herald-mail.com

On the same day a homeowner on Brown Avenue realized he had been a victim in a copper pipe theft spree in Hagerstown, Hagerstown police discovered another copper theft at a house on Virginia Avenue.

There have been at least 28 copper thefts in the city, and many of them have occurred at vacant properties, such as those that are for sale, police said.

Hagerstown Police Department Capt. Mark Holtzman said last week that city officers have been conducting patrols around vacant homes in the city to help guard against the thefts and to detect any homes that might have been broken into for copper pipe.

During one of the patrols, city police noticed a house in the 400 block of Virginia Avenue had been burglarized and copper had been stolen, Holtzman said.

Many of the houses targeted in the copper thefts have been flooded because copper water lines were cut, police said.

The house on Virginia Avenue, which is for sale, was not flooded, and Holtzman said he believes the water service to the house might have been turned off. Holtzman said a minimal amount of copper was stolen.

The owner of the house at Brown and Summit avenues walked into the vacant home and realized copper pipe had been cut and stolen from the house. The basement of the house was flooded because a water line had been cut.

Hagerstown police are seeking the public’s help in solving the crimes and are asking people to be watchful of suspicious activity around homes in their neighborhoods.

Anyone seeing suspicious activity is asked to report it by calling 911.

Holtzman said his department has some leads in its investigation.

“We’re putting a lot of work into it,” he said last week.

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