Copper stolen from vacant homes in South Fargo

FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) — A string of copper theft among three vacant houses in the south part of the metro has the Cass County Sheriff’s office searching for any information that could aid in their investigation.

A little after 5 p.m. Sunday the Cass County Sheriff’s Office received a phone call to reports of vandalized vacant homes on Phieffer Road just off of U.S. Highway 81.

“When we arrived on scene and conducted our initial investigation there was still a lot of product that was there on site. With regards to some houses that were being moved they had been burglarized and those that had made entry into the house had started to cut and remove copper wiring and a lot of the copper fixtures,” Cass County Captain Tim Briggeman said.

Bob Schmidt, a hired professional specializing in home moving, says he believes this isn’t the first time the suspects have stolen copper wiring.

“They cut the main line power first, obviously this isn’t their first rodeo they’ve done this before, they knew exactly where to cut, what to do, how to make it very efficient . So this is not the first time they’ve done this,” Schmidt & Sons President Bob Schmidt said.

Schmidt says not only will the damage be costly to the homeowners, but it will set them back on their move.

“They were looking at probably a week once they got this house set on the foundation, now they’re looking at two to three months. The damage that was done here, all the wires have to be re-pulled upstairs. we’re looking at 10 to $15,000 per house up to $30,000. So, the people that have done this are facing some pretty stuff charges,” said Schmidt.

Briggeman agrees with Schmidt and says the suspects involved are looking at felony level charges.

“In this case it would be burglary because they’re knowingly entering a structure or dwelling that they don’t have privilege to be there and then the damage that was sustained in the house so in this case with regard to whatever wire they pulled out to whatever copper that they had cut and hat ever it was fixed to you’re looking at a criminal mischief charge as well,” said Briggeman.

Categories: Crime, North Dakota News