CPD nabs two men in copper-stealing incident

COVINGTON -- The Covington Police Department recently made two arrests in connection with multiple incidents of thefts from the city of Covington Utlities Department's storage facility on Industrial Boulevard.

Arrested and charged with theft by taking were Douglas Shane Carlile, 22, of 21181 City Pond Road, Oxford, and James Lloyd Stephens, 38, of 223 Anderson Circle.

According to Capt. Philip Bradford, the city was being plagued by thefts of copper wire from the facility.

"They had done this numerous times. The wire is real expensive about $18 a foot. With copper averaging about $4 a pound now, it would take several feet, maybe 5 to 8 feet, to get a pound. It cost the city a whole lot more to buy the wire than what they were getting out of it," Bradford said.

He said detectives knew the culprits were scaling an 8-foot fence to enter the storage area and they installed several video cameras to monitor activities.

"We began monitoring them coming in there and that's how we caught them. We know they did it at least five times," Bradford said.

Bradford said Carlile was inside the facility when officers surrounded it and "he ran right into our arms and we captured him without incident. He had a camoflauge mask on. I guess he thought if he was caught on video, we wouldn't know who it was. Little did he know we'd be there to pull the mask off him."

After Carlile's arrest, Stephens began texting him, asking where he could pick him up. Patrol units intercepted his vehicle and arrested him.

"He was riding around waiting to pick up the other guy. In arresting him, we were able to find more evidence that he was involved in it the other times and probably more. Stephens was arrested about a year or year and a half ago for breaking in the same place. I guess this time he was going to send his buddy in," Bradford said.

Bradford said security had tightened up considerably at the facility.

"From now on, it's going to be a different scene at that city lot when they come to get the wire," he said.