Copper Thieves Hitting New Targets in Dothan

Dothan, AL (WSFA) --  Copper thieves are hard at work in Dothan.

Now, they've started stealing cooper ground wires on utility poles.

"They'll reach up as high as they can and cut that and reach down low and they're stealing that," said city manager Mike West.

West says the city is investigating this problem.  It's not just that there removing copper ground wires from poles it's a possible safety hazard that's being caused as well.

"If there's a malfunction that grounding wire is what takes that electricity to the ground," said West.

The city is checking it's power poles to make sure they're safe and working properly.

They are also looking at other metals to use instead of copper.

However this type of wire is unique.

A local scrap yard said it's something the average person doesn't have.

"If it was from an individual then it wouldn't be legit.  Its not something that you can go to Home Depot or Lowe's and get," said Sam Emfinger, owner of Emfinger steel.

Emfinger and other scrap metal dealers work closely with local authorities to report suspicious activity in the metal business.

Reporter: Daniel Curtis