Robert Law explained to WBNS-10TV where the air conditioning units attached to his campus-area apartment used to be. He never imagined they'd be worth stealing.
“They really don't seem like they'd be that valuable, considering they're already used, and they're not new units or anything,” said Law.
His apartment building, along with nearly 10 others in the area, has been hit by thieves in recent weeks.
Columbus Police said the thieves are targeting AC units in the Clintonville area for their copper. They remove the tubing inside which renders the units completely useless.
In some cases, the thieves are prying open the units to steal the tubing. But sometimes they are ripping them right out off their foundations.
Police said victims are still coming forward.
With AC units idle during the fall months, many people don't realize their home has been hit until they notice the damage.
“I've never seen something like this before to tell you the truth, I mean, that's not even like personal property, that's like residential property,” said Law.
Columbus Police said the thieves seem to be targeting apartment buildings and duplexes. They also believe all of the cases are all connected.
Police said the best way to protect your property is to be aware of your surroundings.
If you see someone acting suspicious in your neighborhood, call police.
“It seems pretty petty, but I know that there's a lot of destitute people here in Columbus and they need to make a living somehow, so it really doesn't surprise me,” said Law.
A surprise may still await some when they switch their thermostat this spring.
Columbus Police said a couple of the victims have reported seeing a man and woman in the area around the time of the thefts driving a silver, Honda Civic.
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