Air-conditioners stolen from Aberdeen, HdG shopping centers

Thieves steal seven air-conditioners from shopping centers in Aberdeen, HdG

Seven commercial air-conditioners were stolen in Aberdeen and Havre de Grace between the end of February and early March, police in those cities said.

Neither the Harford County Sheriff's Office nor Bel Air Police Department have investigated such thefts, both agencies said.

In Havre de Grace, four Trane air-conditioners were stolen from behind the Havre de Grace Plaza shopping center on Route 40 between March 2 and 3, according to Capt. Wayne Young of Havre de Grace Police Department. City police said they're valued at $2,500.

Three air-conditioners were reported stolen from behind Aberdeen Shopping Plaza on Feb. 22 and 23, he said.

The older air-conditioners are being sold for the chemicals and cooper coils, while the exterior metal shells are scrapped. For the newer ones, the "better ones, there is a resale market for them," Sgt. Will Reiber of Aberdeen Police Department said.

"We are working in concert with Havre de Grace," Reiber said. "We're not 100 percent sure they're connected, but some factors lead us to believe it could be related."

Those factors include the proximity of the shopping centers, as well as when the thefts happened, within a week or two of each other, he said.

"It's a trend," Young said. "They figure out how they can make a quick buck, and ride around all night looking for these targets."

Havre de Grace police obtained video surveillance from one of the businesses where an air-conditioner was stolen.

They are looking for the owner of what appears to be a Chevrolet Colorado pickup truck, which appears to have an aftermarket wheel and tire on the rear and a factory wheel and tire on the front. Police would like to speak with the owner of the vehicle.

If anyone sees someone driving around with an air-conditioner in the back of a truck, particularly overnight, to contact Aberdeen police, 410-272-2121, or Havre de Grace police, 410-939-2121.

"If you see someone driving around with a commercial air-conditioner in the middle of the night, that's something that would stick out," Reiber said. "We're hoping someone has information regarding the thefts and if they do, we're hoping they'll step forward and provide that information to us."

In response to the thefts, Aberdeen and Havre de Grace police have increased awareness and patrols.

"Our patrol officers have increased patrols around the shopping plazas," Reiber said.

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