ACWORTH, Ga. — Acworth police said they arrested three people accused of stealing at least a half dozen air conditioning units from homes and businesses. They may be tied to other ripoffs, according to police.
Business owners along South Main Street reported four of six units were stolen recently.
“They ripped the copper lines all the way into the wall, and they were gone,” said Eric Queen, who owns Beam’s Upholstery.
The thieves also hit a hardware store in the strip mall.
“They know what they’re doing,” said Billy Harris, owner of Acworth Parts Today & Hardware. “They were coming to get the copper.”
Police said the thieves sell the copper at local recycling centers. While they don’t get much money, police said that doesn’t stop the suspects.
Police arrested Andrew Massey, 25, Frederick Johnson, 29, and Tia Fuller, 25. They are charged with burglary, theft and production of marijuana.
Investigators said AC units were also stolen from several homes in Acworth.
“That’s very scary,” said Beth Sherwood, whose neighbor had her AC unit stolen while she was home one night.
Homeowners and small business owners said replacing the equipment is costly and a hardship in the tough economy.
“We don’t have big corporate money behind us,” said Harris. “When you do it to the little guy, it’s tough.”
Police urged businesses and residents to be on alert.
“The best thing you can do is just keep your eyes open and report suspicious activity, day or night,” said Maj. Wayne Dennard. “If you notice something that doesn’t look right, call us.”
Tags: HVAC, Theft