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Copper Thieves Targeting Schools In San Francisco’s Sunset District

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Evidence of copper theft. (File - CBS)

Evidence of copper theft. (File – CBS)

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS 5) — San Francisco police are investigating the theft of copper from schools in the city’s Sunset District, including one school that has been hit four times in the past week, police told CBS 5.

The Alice Fong Yu Alternative School, a Chinese immersion public school in the 1500 block of 12th Avenue, had copper pipes stolen from a construction site on campus on four straight days starting Aug. 10, said Capt. Curtis Lum from the department’s Taraval Station.

Lum said in response to the thefts, police have put additional patrols and plainclothes officers in the area. The school also has a security guard, he said.

Police have a description of the suspect, but Lum declined to release it, citing the ongoing investigation.

Lum said another school in the area, the French School at 1201 Ortega Street, was also targeted by copper thieves. An employee at the school reported seeing two men removing copper rain gutters from a campus building on Sunday about 5:30 p.m.

Lum told CBS 5 that it was not clear whether that theft was related to the others. No arrests had been made as of Wednesday in any of the thefts.

“It is unusual that all of a sudden all these schools are getting hit,” he said.

Anyone with information about the thefts was encouraged by Lum to call the Police Department’s anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or send a tip by text message to TIP411.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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