Thieves Target Historic Bronze Light Poles in Pasadena

Thieves have embarked on a spree of thefts targeting nearly a dozen bronze light poles in Pasadena, leaving the city’s iconic fixtures in disarray. The stolen poles, some of which date back over a century, line the renowned Orange Grove Boulevard, casting a warm glow every 30 feet. The brazen thefts have raised concerns among residents and city officials alike.

According to Pasadena spokesperson Lisa Derderian, the suspect or suspects responsible for these audacious acts have managed to topple the light poles and make off with the valuable fixtures. In a recent failed attempt, a thief resorted to strapping a large chain around one of the poles and attempting to pull it out using a truck. However, a vigilant local resident witnessed the act and promptly alerted the authorities. The thief fled the scene, leaving behind their chain as evidence.

The Pasadena Police Department has reported multiple incidents of theft, with the first occurring between March 29 and April 1. Additional thefts took place on April 4 or 5 and April 8, all transpiring between midnight and 4 a.m. These light poles, originally erected in the 1920s, were previously targeted in a similar wave of thefts more than a decade ago.

While copper wire and bronze plaques have also fallen victim to theft in Pasadena, the light poles stand out as the most conspicuous losses. Their absence leaves behind a tangle of electrical wiring and dark voids in the concrete where the poles once stood. Derderian acknowledged the difficulty in vandal-proofing these historic poles, leading the city to replace them with replicas. Each replacement pole costs approximately $1,600, while stolen poles fetch an estimated $400 on the scrap metal market.

The theft of these light poles adds to a growing list of bronze items stolen in recent months, likely driven by their scrap value. In February, three individuals were arrested by the Los Angeles Port Police in connection with a series of bronze plaque thefts in Long Beach and its surrounding areas. Notably, a bronze plaque honoring members of the local Japanese American fishing community who were imprisoned during World War II remains missing after being stolen from Terminal Island. Additionally, over a hundred gravestone plaques were stolen from a cemetery in Carson, and a plaque commemorating the history of Bruce’s Beach in Manhattan Beach was pried off a plinth approximately a year after its installation.

Authorities urge anyone with information regarding these thefts or any suspicious activity to contact the Pasadena Police Department at (626) 744-6492 or (626) 744-4501.

Author: CrimeDoor

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