LUDLOW, Mass. (WGGB) — At around 1:30 Sunday afternoon, police caught Brian Gebo and Richard Simms stealing copper from the Ludlow Mills Complex.
“In the last few months or so, we’ve been noticing some power outages and what not. On further investigation, we found out we had some thefts,” said Ed Jodoin, VP of Redevelopment at WestMass Area Development Corporation.
“We had our patrol units and surveillance making extra rounds through the complex. We passed through and saw a vehicle at the back loading dock. One of the perps locked the door to the building, we did not have access to the building, and he made it out another door,” Sgt. Louis Tulik stated.
“I think their impression was this area was vacant, as you can see there’s a lot of activity. That made it difficult for us to determine who belonged here, and who didn’t,” added Det. David Kornacki.
The robbers also had some knowledge of working with electricity, snipping 100 year old live wires to get to other pieces of copper.
“Anytime there was an issue with power, we lost power to the tenants, who lost productivity, so it’s pretty widespread,” explains Jodoin.
While the crooks only got about $10,000 to $20,000 worth of lining, it’ll cost Jodoin $50,000 to replace.
Police say they believe this issue is widespread, with Gebo and Simms making a living possibly doing this in other towns as well.
Police also report there was another female in the car, who they are not charging because they say she was unaware of what was happening, and was extremely cooperative.
Simms will be arraigned in Palmer District Court. There is a warrant out for Gebo’s arrest.