Rise in Church Thefts

Pastor Hal Rogers
Pastor Hal Rogers

Amarillo, TX - The scraps of metal on the side of The Pleasant Valley Christian Church used to be the their five air conditioning units. Now they're just evidence of a growing trend in the Amarillo area.

Copper theft is something that the Amarillo police have been dealing with for quite some time. But what seems to be different now is the victim. "Last Wednesday morning I made my loop around the back and I noticed someone had taken them all apart and taken the copper out of them." Pastor Hal Rogers is referring to the 5 air conditioning units on the side of his church.

Which isn't the only church in our area with that problem says Pastor Rogers, "We've been told that copper theft is on the increase. The price of copper is higher. Then I've been told by several friends of mine that are Pastors that they've had these thefts too.

But the Amarillo Police feel they may have a solution. It's called Data Dots and it's essentially a paste that contains serial numbers. "The owners that marked the property with Data Dots will register those numbers so we're able to go online and see who the property owner is. Maybe find a local address," says Shawn Slover of the Amarillo Police.

This is a relatively new technology but police are hoping success in other area's will help curb the problem here. But as for pastor Rogers thoughts, "I've been a Minister for 40 years. This is the first church I've ever had to lock and watch for thefts. I think that shows something about society."

The Amarillo police are offering one thousand dollars to anyone with information involving a copper theft that leads to an arrest.