Copper thieves target vacant Macy's

Author: Courtney Zavala, Anchor/Reporter, czavala@kprc.com
Published On: Oct 17 2012 06:10:05 PM CDT   Updated On: Oct 17 2012 06:25:14 PM CDT
HOUSTON -

A department store that has been closed since it was damaged in Hurricane Ike has been targeted by thieves.

Houston police said copper thieves hit the old Macy's store at Northwest Mall.

"They went for the high-dollar stuff," said Officer Chad Stivers with HPD's Metal Theft Unit.

Police said they were first notified of a problem on Oct. 4th. The lights in the parking lot weren't working.

"They tried the breaker and there was nothing," said Stivers.

Once they took a look around with flashlights, they noticed what happened.

"Expensive copper wiring all stripped," said Stivers.

It's a hit that most likely took hours and cost thousands.

"We've got more than $250,000 worth of damage," said Stivers.

The guys who did this left behind a few clues, including packaging from materials they bought.

"They bought saw blades, walkie-talkies and electrical testers," said Stivers.

Also found in the same area were two receipts from Home Depot dated Sept. 21 and Sept. 24

"The item numbers on the packages matched the numbers on the receipts so we went to Home Depot," said Stivers.

Detectives looked over surveillance video and found two guys and a getaway driver who made the purchases. They drive a pickup truck. Police are now calling them persons of interest and want to talk to them.

"It's a vacant building, but this is still a felony burglary of a building," said Officer Stivers.

Anyone with information as to who the men are is asked to call HPD at 281-405-6567 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.