ALBANY — During a 2:30 a.m. stakeout Wednesday, police caught two copper irrigation wire theft suspects in a cotton field.
One copper wire thief was 12 feet atop a triangular pivot ready to cut the copper wire from an irrigation line when Dougherty County Police Department officers stopped him, said Detective Sgt. Chad Kirkpatrick.
“We stopped him before he cut the line,” Kirkpatrick said. “We didn’t want him to damage the farmer’s irrigation lines.”
The thief’s partner took off running from the 4500 block of Harris Road field but he didn’t get more than 10 feet before officers grabbed him, Kirkpatrick said. Both men wore black gloves and black hoodies, he added.
Because it is a continuing investigation, Kirkpatrick did not release the names of the thieves or the make and model of the waiting getaway vehicle. They are in Dougherty County Jail, he added.
Police confiscated black electric tape used to hold the copper wire together as it is stolen, flashlights and a hacksaw.
The men will be charged with two felonies — criminal attempt of theft by taking and possession of tools for the commission of a crime. Both will be charged with misdemeanor criminal trespass.
Kirkpatrick said, “It is possible there will be more arrests of copper irrigation wire thieves.”
Also participating in the investigation were the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Worth County Sheriff Office and the Dougherty County District Attorney’s Office.