CrimeTracker 15: 2 Arrested for Allegedly Stealing Copper Wire from McDonald's Roof

Posted Tuesday, March 19, 2013 --- 11:33 a.m.

Incident Report from the Madison Police Department:

Incident Type: Theft

Incident Date: 03/18/2013 - 2:40 PM

Address: 3051 E. Washington Ave. (McDonald's)

Arrested: John T. Patt Sr., age 52, Madison
Brian J. Mitchell, age 40, Madison
Both suspects were arrested for Theft From Building and Criminal Damage to Property.

Details: An alert citizen contacted the MPD Monday afternoon after watching a suspicious man doing something on the roof of McDonald's, 3051 E. Washington Ave. There was a second suspect down below, who appeared to be a look-out. He would periodically scan the parking lot, and then yell something up to his accomplice, whose head she could see "bopping" around.

When the first officer arrived, he approached the man standing near a built-in ladder to the restaurant's roof. "Just hanging out," trying to clear his head, the man told the officer, as he claimed no knowledge of anyone being up on the roof, and firmly asserted that he was here alone.

The officer yelled up to the roof, and ordered the second suspect down. He had a backpack full of copper, and came clean immediately: acknowledging he was cutting and stealing metal, and that he indeed knew the man below. He should, they are roommates.

Officers found more copper wire and piping cut and lying on the roof. The look-out later admitted he and his friend are "scrappers."

One local recycler told the MPD that the going rate for copper is around $3 per pound.

The targeted McDonald’s is being renovated and is not currently open. It is not known yet how much it will cost to repair damage caused by the “scrapping.” A restaurant manager said the roof area had been in good shape prior to the crime.

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