Houston police nab suspected copper thief

January 29, 2008 5:09:07 PM PST
Houston police say they've taken a copper thief off the streets. An officer says he caught John Lee, 48, trying to cut large pieces of copper off an air conditioning unit at Tidwell Elementary School. The officer was patrolling the area when he heard a loud noise at the back of the building. Police say lee was inside a metal cage meant to keep people from getting to the air condition unit.

"He just says that's what he does," said O.M. Gamez with the Houston Police Department. "He goes and picks up stuff wherever he can find it. And he goes and sell it."

Investigators say recent copper thefts at the school amount to $7,000 in damage. Tidwell elementary is currently not in use.

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