In southwest Omaha, an early morning theft left water pouring out of a home. Thieves cut away an important section of a sprinkler system And it's not the first time.
Water gushing from a sawed off pipe wakes Mary Ann Klinger like an expensive splash in the face. Klinger says, " Just the time and expense of getting it replaced. You think you're safe in the neighborhood and you're not."
It appears the thief used an electric saw to quickly steal the back flow preventer. Mary Ann Klinger says. " I didn't notice it until it was gone."
More than a dozen reported stolen in Douglas County alone.
Lt. Mark Gentile with the Douglas co. Sheriff's office says, " Seems like they're targeting these residences between four and six or six thirty in the morning so make sure you're vigilant."
Omaha police and Sarpy sheriffs also have victims missing an important section of their sprinkler systems. Not long after some of the thefts neighbors reported seeing a man wearing a safety vest like this messing around backflow preventers. Maybe as a disguise to appear like a legitimate worker.
But plumbers say the backflow preventer thieves are going to a lot of trouble for little return. John Amato of Eyman plumbing says," Between the brass and copper probably getting twenty bucks for it and its costing the homeowner three to four hundred."
Less than her deductible so money to pay for a replacement will have to flow out of Mary Ann’s checking account.
At least two apartment complexes are also reporting backflow thefts and those cost more to replace. Each about -500- dollar.WOWT 6 Crimestoppers is helping... So if you have information about the thefts call *Douglas County* crime stoppers at 402-444-6-thousand.