Hell In A Handbasket

Another first in the annals of urban desperation. Thieves in Baltimore are cutting down and stealing aluminum light poles to sell for scrap.

The poles are 30 feet high and weigh 250 pounds. 130 poles have gone missing in the past several weeks. The city estimates that the poles will cost $156,000 to replace. A scap metal dealer from Baltimore quoted in the article says the thieves are probably cutting them into pieces and selling them out of town. She also mentions that aluminum scap is selling for 35 cents a pound. That means each pole is only fetching the thieves $87.50.

The money quote:
“If the cops can’t catch guys who’re cutting down 30-foot poles, how are they going to crack a major drug gang?” said Chip Franklin, a talk-show host on WBAL Radio, a local news and talk station. “What’s next? Someone taking a downtown building?”

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