Copper Thief Electrocuted While Attempting To Steal Copper Wire from Light Pole
A copper thief was killed early Thursday morning in east Oklahoma City after being electrocuted while attempting to steal copper wire from a light pole, according to KWTV.
The spike in copper prices in recent years has driven well known black market for the metal.
The National Insurance Crime Bureau reported that over a three year period there were 28,000 claims for theft of industrial metals — 98% of which was copper. The trend has been attributed to copper’s ease of access, as it is often unguarded in industrial air conditioning units, open construction sites, abandoned properties and public power utilities.
The NICB added that while there was a reported decline in these claims following a decline in copper prices and a nationwide effort to enact laws to combat this black market, prices have climbed back up, and the U.S. Department of Energy still estimates copper thieves are netting over $1 billion annually.
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