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UPDATE: Reward available for tips on dangerous, possible lethal crime of stealing copper wire on P.E.I.

Copper wire.
PHOTO ILLUSTRATION: Copper wire. ©THE GUARDIAN

Someone is stealing copper wire from Maritime Electric sub-stations, and authorities want tips from the public as soon as possible.

Maritime Electric is offering a $5,000 reward to any tip that leads to a conviction for thefts that have happened from Maritime Electric sub-stations in Lorne Valley, West St. Peters, Dingwells Mills, Scotchfort and Souris sub-stations. There has been significant damage during the thefts, said the utility.

“On Friday, April 20, crews were working to repair damage at the Lorne Valley sub-station,” said a notice issued by Maritime Electric Thursday. “As a result of the damage caused by the thieves, approximately 12,000 customers were without power for an extended period of time.

“Thieves cut out protective fences and seriously damaged equipment, which put Maritime Electric Employees at risk,” the company said.

The copper wire that was taken is part of the grounding system that protects the facility, said a report also issued Thursday by the RCMP. “The perimeter fence can become energized with a lethal voltage if the grounding system is disabled.”

Both the RCMP and Maritime Electric are asking for tips about the copper thefts.

Sometime during the night between April 18 and 19, someone cut a hole in the perimeter fence around stations in West St. Peters and Cardigan and approximately $500 or more of copper wire was stolen.

The RCMP is now promoting a new phone app that is a new option for submitting information about crimes.

It’s called Global Intel, and the free app is available at http://p3intel.com/mobile.htm.

People with information about these crimes who want to speak to an RCMP officer directly should call the Montague Detachment at 902-838-9300.

To give a tip, remain anonymous and possibly qualify for a cash reward, contact Crime Stoppers, either on the Internet and follow the various ways to make a tip, or make a toll-free, anonymous phone call to 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

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