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Cell Tower Update 9.21.11

From the News-Ledger
Feb. 2, 2011

By Steve Marschke

News-Ledger Editor

    At about 12:43 a.m. Monday morning, patrolling police saw a flash of light coming from the area near Raley Field at South River Road and Riske Lane. They arrived to find an unusual crime had been committed: somebody had stolen 1,200 feet of overhead power line, presumably for its copper content.

 “One of the cops said, ‘Wow, a transformer must have blown,’” reports Lieutenant Tod Sockman of the West Sacramento Police Department. “They saw a big huge flash but didn’t hear any sound.”

  Police arrived to find no sign of any suspects, but they discovered the theft.

  “The suspects must have known what they were doing,” said Sockman. “They were able to pull the wire down without getting electrocuted, and get it into a vehicle and get away before police responded. PG&E was contacted and discovered a little over 1,200 feet of power line was stolen. It looks like some kind of grappling hook was used to pull it down. Somehow they didn’t cook themselves by doing it. There’s no way they took it on foot, it’s too heavy.”

  The line was “about the diameter of a dime,” said Sockman, and it contained several stands of copper wiring adding up to 4,600 feet of wire.

  Media reports say about 55 PG&E customers lost their power for a couple of hours after the theft. One of those customers was the West Sacramento police station at Jefferson Boulevard and Triangle Court.

  “We went immediately onto generator power,” said Sockman. “It didn’t affect our operations.”

  Any clues as to the culprits?

  “We do have some evidence from the scene, left behind by the people,” he answered. “It’s being processed. I’ve got a detective working on it and we have an alert out to all the salvage yards and contractors in California.”

  Sockman said he was not aware of any reports of similar-style crimes elsewhere in the region.




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