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#69517 - 09/13/06 04:15 PM Stolen Copper
Tom H Offline

Registered: 01/31/05
Posts: 74
Loc: Milford, Ct, USA
So I have a job where there is an existing electrician and I was hired by an AV company to do Crestron/Home audio and a Home Theater installation. Before I started work one, I contacted the owner of the other company, had a chat with him and his partner and they are 100% ok with me doing my work. He was personally glad to not have the liability for installing AV cabling and have the AV contractor come back at him for issues[side note, he is interested in working with my company for a Lutron project]

OK. So part of my scope of work is a 100 amp feeder and sub panel in an AV closet, all sorts of power conditioning and all the electrical work in the home theater. I order up and bring to the site approx. $1000 worth of copper wire for feeders, long run and all that, panel, breaker etc. My wife goes into labor and I end up off the site for little over a week. I get back and guess what's gone. All the copper. Panel is still there, all breakers.

I go thru the (deleted)roof. Call the owners rep., call the GC and electrician. All have no clue as to who could have taken wire. So what recourse do I have. I'll tell ya. The job is a remodel at this point and the owner is a bit paranoid so what is all over the cameras

After some review with the owners rep, it is just like candid camera, there is a tradesman making not one but three trips to a van with site materials not belonging to him. Company name not visible, but plate number is. Right now is in the investigation phase, but either way, I'm out the money for the copper till someone figures out who it is and where it went. Talk about a bad day.

(edited for another case of an abbreviated cuss word. Everybody was doing OK for a while, but seems like it's getting worse....again)

[This message has been edited by electure (edited 09-13-2006).]

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#69518 - 09/13/06 05:54 PM Re: Stolen Copper
ExpressQuote Offline

Registered: 04/27/06
Posts: 83
Loc: BC, Canada

Have you done much work with Crestron? and Lutron?

Just in the process of getting my contractors license, and have a little experience in the industry from the alarm side of things.

Thinking I might like to try to get more involved in that type of work. Any suggestions?

And sorry to hear about the wire theft...

#69519 - 09/13/06 06:10 PM Re: Stolen Copper
Surfinsparky Offline

Registered: 07/29/05
Posts: 77
Loc: merritt island fl usa
Crestron and lutron means big bucks especially crestron!!

#69520 - 09/13/06 06:29 PM Re: Stolen Copper
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
Tom, I'm sorry for your loss.

I'd insist upon the immediate firing of the thief. I'd make a copy of the taps, and have criminal charges pressed.

Indeed, a lot rests upon the guy's first response. If he says "Oops, I thought it was ours"... and the stuff is found in his company's storeroom.... well, accidents happen.
BUT- it's best that you let the police do this questioning. You don't want to tip your hand.

Also, a thief seldom steals but once. The Police will be quite interested in the contents of his van, theft experience at his past assignments, etc.

If the Police determine that a theft has occurred, and they are the ones to approach his employer.... his employer is very likely to become your strongest ally. After all, it's likely he's had some stuff go missing as well.

#69521 - 09/13/06 06:43 PM Re: Stolen Copper
e57 Offline

Registered: 05/27/03
Posts: 2837
Loc: S.F.,CA USA
Hey you got a plate number!!!! Kudos for that..... Sounds like you got a describtion of the putz too? That is a lot better than most get with a theft of any size....

I have a few cameras on my house, it's not paranoid if you have footage of people ripping you off, or attempting to.
See this thread Had I been a little faster I would have bashed that guys head in with a 1/2" bender handle. Had I not had a picture there was one suspicious kid (probhably on his way home late) who was really close to having his head bashed in. (Just for being on my street right after my window was busted.) It was a good thing I had a camera there.... And a good thing your customer did too.....
Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason

#69522 - 09/14/06 07:32 AM Re: Stolen Copper
Tom H Offline

Registered: 01/31/05
Posts: 74
Loc: Milford, Ct, USA
As of right now the owners rep is handling it, mainly due to the fact that I'm preocupied with baby #3. Heard from him via voicemail and he has not heard form suspected contractor yet. Mind you he hasn't confronted him yet. He wants to do it face to face with evidence in hand.

#69523 - 09/14/06 03:19 PM Re: Stolen Copper
LK Offline


Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 1721
Loc: New Jersey
Don't feel alone, we have copper theft every day here, this is todays report,

Copper taken from parts store

WOODBRIDGE: About $5,000 worth of stripped copper was taken from an auto parts store on Leesville Avenue, its owner reported this week.

The thief or thieves apparently climbed the fence several times to gather the copper, which was being held in a recycling container, police said.

Richard Khavkine

Wiring stolen from Avenel home

WOODBRIDGE: About 300 to 400 feet of copper and wiring was reported stolen from an Avenel home under construction.

Police were dispatched to George Street around 8 a.m. Friday for a report of a burglary and theft.

When police arrived, they saw the house was under construction and spoke to the two owners who indicated the last time someone was at the house was 7 p.m. on Sept. 7. The contractor arrived at 8 a.m. the next day and found the garage door had been left open all night.

In the basement, police found copper and wires, hung across the ceiling, had been stolen.

Suzanne C. Russell

#69524 - 09/14/06 03:44 PM Re: Stolen Copper
Larry Fine Offline

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 684
Loc: Richmond, VA
While I try to never leave uninstalled material on an unsecured jobsite, my position is that any material delivered, and especially installed, belongs to the customer. They are the victims of the theft, not me.

Now, I don't claim to know the legal aspects of my position, but it is definitely where I'd stand. Now, for tools, that's totally on me to keep them secured onsite, and taken home at the end of the day.
Larry Fine
Fine Electric Co.

#69525 - 09/23/06 10:55 PM Re: Stolen Copper
DougW Offline

Registered: 06/08/03
Posts: 1083
Loc: North Chicago, IL
Larry's got the right idea.

Any down payment I get includes all of the materials for the phase of construction. It's the customer's unless it gets repo'd due to non payment, and that way my accounts get paid on time.


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