Copper pipes and wires can be a hot item for thieves.
Muskingum County Sheriff, Matt Lutz, says 2009 saw a spike in the amount of copper-related thefts.
"We had different kinds of thefts from people breaking into the power stations, we had some houses people broke into and took copper pipe right out of the basement and left water running in people's abandoned houses and such, so there have been some of those issues," tells Sheriff Lutz.
He says there was a large theft on January 15th of this year on Licking Road.
"They stole some rolls, some big coils of aluminum and they also took some copper tubing, some copper pipe from some of the transformers, so the issue is that it is not only theft and it causes the owners problems, but it is a very dangerous thing that people can die from," tells Sheriff Lutz.
Sheriff Lutz says in the process of stealing from transformers people can electrocute themselves. When there is a theft, the Sheriff's Office alerts local scrap yards to be on the look-out. He does have some simple tips to for homeowners, such as keeping your home well lit at night and locking all your doors since thieves often look for unlocked homes. Also, he says if you notice anyone hanging around your neighborhood that is out of the ordinary, call the Sheriff's Office.