Thieves Cut Gas Lines To Edmond Company Vans
EDMOND, Oklahoma - Edmond Police say they’re searching for a couple of gas thieves who were caught on camera targeting a business of E 2nd Street. The owner of Hi-Tech Plumbing and Leak Detect Jamey Mullin says what appears to be two men crawled under his work vans and cut the fuel lines to drain gas into a container.
“Probably somebody who is out of gas," Mullin guesses, "doesn't have any money, and ‘Hey, these vans are sitting here.'”
Surveillance tape clocks the appearance of these alleged thieves at around 1:00 a.m. Wednesday. It wasn’t until staff got to work that they found a puddle of fuel on the ground and a loose gas cap that they checked other vehicles for damage. Mullin estimates the thieves got away with less than $5 in fuel but says this theft cost the company so much more.
“The damage that was caused was a couple of thousands total,” Mullin says, "if I was to not have my own mechanic, which fortunately I do." Mullin doesn’t have an exact estimate just yet.
He says he parks the vans outside to advertise his business, and that while he was trying to attract customers, he also caught the eyes of thieves over the years. In February 2017, Edmond Police took a report that Mullin had a hydraulic trailer stolen from his lot, worth $7,000. No one has been caught and the trailer was never recovered. Mullin says someone has also been stealing his mail.
“It's anything they can get into,” Mullin says. "At some point, they will break in the building and try to get something."
Investigations reveal three vans were targeted. Two had their fuel lines cut. The other was siphoned the old-fashioned way. This morning, employees found a razor blade and say they think it was left during the crime.
“The old-time siphoning with the hose actually seemed to work for him,” Mullin says, "but cutting the gas lines didn't."
As a joke, Mullin left a gas can outside his office. It's his message to the thieves, mixed with a little humor. He says, next time, he hopes someone will just ask if they need help.
“Give them five bucks in gas so it doesn't cause thousands of dollars in gas to my vehicles,” Mullin says.
That gas can has been removed tonight but Mullin has requested extra patrol from Edmond Police. He says he will also be adding other security technology that will alert him when strangers are on his property.