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Car battery thefts trending in Owasso

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Updated: 7/10/2013 8:47 am Published: 7/09/2013 9:12 pm

Car thieves are getting under hoods rather than inside the car and stealing the central nervous system to operate for a cheap buck.

FOX23 News first you told about vandals striking an Owasso day care stealing a battery from a school bus and now it's becoming a trend.

Near 82nd Street North and U.S. 169 where Tri-Star construction workers are completing a drainage project batteries were stolen from their construction equipment.

Superintendent Frank Jugler has been doing construction for 35 years and he doesn't like anyone messing with his site.

"I was dead in the water," said Jugler

He spent half his day looking for batteries for his excavators and Bobcat. For four hours no one could work or move dirt.

"I feel like someone did this to slow me down, really, who would do this?" said Jugler.

He believes the battery from the Bobcat was easy to steal but harder in the excavators and said the doors were not pried open.

"What was wild about it is that the doors were locked," said Jugler.

He said he saw last week on FOX News where thieves stole a battery from a bus parked at the Children's Depot near 86th Street North and U.S. 169.

"I had seen something on TV about that," said Jugler.

He never thought he would be a target.

"I have all my time clock, tools and everything is in there [shed] so when they took it [batteries], I had no way to move this and get in there," said Jugler.

A local metal recycler who did not want to be named told FOX23 News they have seen a slight increase of people bringing in car batteries.

Battery car thefts are becoming a nationwide trend and the thieves are known to work like copper thieves. They make a few dollars, $10 to $18 depending on the size of the battery, but cause more damage.

“Two hundred fifty dollars apiece,” said Jugler.

While police are closing in on the thieves, Jugler is working to make it tougher for the battery thieves.

"What the worse thing about it, is are they going to come back” he said.

State law does not require metal recyclers to document identification on people selling batteries like they do copper.
FOX23 News found a battery lock or hood lock can start at $50 and run more than $100.

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