It happened around midnight at the Spectrum Metals on Hughes in southeast Houston.
Officers say the suspects pulled a pickup truck to the business and hopped the fence and began loading sheet metal. What they didn't know was an off-duty officer working an extra security job was watching them. He called for back-up and set up a perimeter.
Police caught one of the suspects immediately. They arrested the other two just before 1am. All three of them are in custody. So far, there is no word on their charges.
Police say one of the suspects worked at a business located behind the scrap yard, which is how they were able to gain access.