Sprague, Conn. (WTNH) - Police in four towns in the eastern part of the state are reminding homeowners to be on alert for copper thieves.
A lot of times when you hear about copper thefts they are in vacant houses or seasonal homes where people are not around for months at a time, but in one Sprague neighborhood police say one suspect was going into homes and cutting out copper when people are at work.
The daytime burglaries were not just easy grabs, the thief was after copper which is fetching a pretty penny at scrap yards.
"It's kind of scary actually," Rock Jewett, of Sprague.
Jewett says one of the homes on Pautipaug Hill Road was vacant, but people were living in the others.
"You go home at night you go to turn on your water and you don't have any water because someone stole the pipes out of your basement," Jewett said. "It's kind of weird."
Jewett says in one home the heating system was torn apart. Still this may have been a sign of trouble for the thief. Jewett says his friend confronted a man who looked suspicious.
"He just asked him what he was doing." said Jewett. "The guy says 'oh I'm doing plumbing work.' He asked him 'let me see your license' because he's a union gentleman himself and the guy just took off."
However, the friend was able to catch a license plate number, and as it turns out it was the same man suspected in other burglaries.
"Approximately 35 burglaries in this area," said First Selectman Cathy Osten, "not just in Sprague, but in this area."
Windham, Franklin, and Lisbon have also been hit by the copper thieves.
"Everybody's a little worried," Jewett said, "everybody keeps an eye out."
Even though the suspect took off when he was confronted, the license plate number may help police tie that suspect to the other burglaries in the neighborhood and could help with a conviction.
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