About $87,000 worth of equipment and materials have been swiped by copper wire thieves in Umatilla County, sheriff's officials said.
So far this year, deputies have taken 15 reports about thieves stealing span cable, copper wire, irrigation cable, axles, radiators and tools from farms and businesses, Sheriff John Trumbo said.
The price of the non-ferrous metal has risen dramatically and “has not gone unnoticed by the criminal element in Umatilla County,” he said.
Reports of theft of hay and fuel are also on the rise.
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Officials encourage residents to practice good crime prevention to avoid becoming a victim and report all suspicious activity to law enforcement.