Three in custody in connection with copper theft

Smoke alerted a patrolling Albany Police Department officer to three men burning insulation off heavy copper wire on the 400 block of Nona Drive at about 1 a.m. today.

Albany Fire Department firefighters put out the fire that was described as having flames as tall as a two story home.

Officers took three men into custody in connection with the wire fire, which may have been stolen from local factories.

Animal control staff had to restrain three pit bull dogs obviously chained near the wire to protect it from other thieves while the fire was out out and officers investigated the scene.