3 men arrested in copper theft
by staff reports
January 17, 2013 12:00 AM | 3318 views | 2 2 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
WALESKA — Three men were arrested Tuesday in connection with a copper theft at a power substation on Fincher Road in Waleska.

Donnie Chastain, 40, of Talking Rock; Charles Johnson, 34, of Marble Hill; and Michael Smith, 31, of Ellijay, were arrested by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office on charges of felony theft by taking, criminal damage to property and criminal trespass, according to Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Jay Baker.

The incident began on Tuesday at 2 a.m. when Cherokee Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to an alarm call at a power substation belonging to Georgia Transportation Corp. at 4898 Fincher Road in Waleska, Baker said in a release.

Deputies discovered the perimeter fence has been cut and found additional evidence to suggest someone had recently been on the property.

Employees of Amicolola Electric Membership Corp. arrived on the scene and determined that about 162 pounds of copper had been stolen from the substation, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The cost to replace the copper is estimated at $3,800, Baker said.

Baker said that later that evening Sgt. Todd Shinall, who had responded to the theft earlier in the day, was reporting for duty when he observed a vehicle traveling on Fincher Road.

“He recalled seeing the same vehicle in the vicinity of the copper theft earlier in the day. The vehicle turned down a dirt road near the same Amicolola power station.” Baker said in the release.

Sgt. Shinall called for assistance and due to the condition of the muddy road, he and other deputies walked down the road.

They located two suspects in the woods near the truck and one suspect inside the truck. The two suspects in the woods appeared to be preparing to burn the rubber coating off copper wiring, Baker said.

A quantity of copper, suspected to be the same copper stolen from the substation was recovered at the scene, according to Baker.

All three remain in custody at the Cherokee Adult Detention center on $17,575 bond each.
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Holy Moly
January 17, 2013
Congratulations to Sgt. Shinall and the Sheriff's Department for a job well done. Now if they can find out where they have been selling stolen copper, they will have caught the BIG FISH.
Dang it
January 19, 2013
Well they shouldn't of been doing that they r grown man and may have kids to take care of and look after...... I think that they were not in there right minds and at the right place at the right time...... I think that ,that was just a one time thing and they know better ..... That is just sad..... :( I bet the family these 3 men go to are humiliated....
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