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Hagerstown man pleads guilty to stealing copper wires, pipes

Roger Brandon Bushby will face a hearing to see if he owes more than $114,000 in restitution

August 13, 2013|By DON AINES | dona@herald-mail.com

A Hagerstown man pleaded guilty on Tuesday in Washington County Circuit Court to stealing copper wire and pipes from an unoccupied building, but will face a hearing later to determine whether he owes more than $114,000 in restitution.

“I’m just concerned about the restitution. I don’t agree with that,” Roger Brandon Bushby told Washington County Circuit Judge Daniel P. Dwyer.

Bushby, 36, of Spruce Street in Hagerstown pleaded guilty to theft of $1,000 to $10,000 and was sentenced to 10 years in state prison, with all but 18 months suspended. Bushby will serve his sentence in the Washington County Detention Center.

Assistant State’s Attorney Gina Cirincion told Dwyer that the theft took place on Feb. 21 at an unoccupied building on Precision Place owned by the Bowman Corp.

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A Washington County Sheriff’s Office deputy went to the site to investigate a report of a suspicious vehicle and found Bushby, Cirincion said. He also found a large quantity of copper wire and pipes, as well as a power saw and bolt cutters, inside the car, she said.

The copper — including parts from four industrial air-conditioning units that were damaged beyond repair — was removed from the building, Cirincion said. The value of the copper alone was about $1,500, she said.

Bushby told the investigating deputy that he was working as a private contractor for a local electrical company, according to charging documents.

The company was contacted and officials said that Bushby no longer worked for the firm. The Bowman Corp. also said it had no contractor doing work at the building, the documents said.

After Bushby questioned the amount of restitution, Dwyer told him that he was not only responsible for the value of the items taken, but for the damage to the equipment. 

However, Dwyer said the issue of restitution would be taken up at another hearing.

In exchange for Bushby’s plea, charges of second-degree burglary, malicious destruction of property and trespass were dismissed.

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