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Suspected Copper Thief Caught In The Act

By admin - Posted on 14 April 2013

While on patrol on Saturday, April 13, 2013 a Meagher County Sheriff's Deputy encountered a suspicious vehicle parked at the Northwestern Energy Substation at Loweth.

After conducting an investigation Mark Schlater of East Helena, was arrested and charged with Theft, Criminal Trespass, Criminal Possession of Dangerous Drugs, and Criminal Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. A charge of Criminal Mischief is pending until Northwestern Energy gets an estimate for the damage done to the site. If the damage is over $1,500 Schlater could be charged with a felony.

During the course of the investigation deputies obtained a search warrant for Schlater's vehicle. Inside the vehicle deputies found approximately 15 pounds of copper wire, marijuana and a glass pipe.

Copper is currently selling for $3.35 a pound. Copper theft has been a big problem over the last couple of years.

If you see any suspicious activity around sites that may contain copper products please report it immediately.



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