Electric company rewards sheriff's department

By Mike Heine/The Week

(Published August 22, 2006, 11:58 a.m.)

Alliant Energy donated $2,000 to the Walworth County Sheriff's Department for surveillance equipment after deputies used Global Positioning System tracking devices to capture four people suspected of stealing copper and aluminum cable from electrical substations.

The department last month used the high-tech equipment to trace two men and two juveniles who allegedly took $20,000 worth of wire and tools from at least two county substations. GPS trackers were attached to the wire and authorities made the bust after the large spools were moved. Deputies recovered $6,500 worth of wire, $3,000 in additional tools and confiscated a van.

The metal wire was being sold as scrap metal.

Citizens are asked to call police if they see suspicious activities in or around electrical substations.

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