Copper thieves target farmers in Saline Co. - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Copper thieves target farmers in Saline Co.

SALINE COUNTY, IL (KFVS) -

Police are warning farmers to keep a close eye on their grain bins and other farming equipment.

"The grain bins the dryer system of an auger system attached to the bin, the motors are getting stolen," said Saline County Sheriff Keith Brown.

"Along with the motors the thieves are also cutting down power poles that connect to farmers grain bins so they can get to the copper wire. They're just cutting the copper wire, rolling it up and walking away."

now the farmers who have been targeted are frustrated with the loss of equipment and money to replace the stolen items.

"They took two of my electric motors, a water pump and some nuts and bolts and an air-compressor," said David Hilliard.

"Just about whatever they could grab and get away with quickly. Except for the electric motors, I had them welded onto a bench and they brought a cutting-torch and cut them off."

But, some farmers in Saline County say the thieves took much more then just the copper wire from their grain bins.

"They've come in and cut down the poles stole the wire and the meters,"said Carl Payne.

"They took the meters apart and messed up the power boxes. We're going to be out three to four thousand dollars in damages."

Police have found two of the stolen electric motors at the metal recycling plant in Equality.

And now they are asking for your help tracking down who is stealing all the electric motors on grain bins, and pivot irrigation systems.

If you have any information about these crimes in Saline County please contact the Saline County Sheriff's Office at 618-252-8661.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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