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Batteries snatched from boats

November 5, 2010

A recent string of crime in Sherrills Ford could be the work of several people.
At least four boat batteries were stolen since Oct. 22 from boats kept in the Sherrills Ford area. Several homes were also broken into, resulting in more than $6,800 of property stolen or damaged.
Catawba County Chief Deputy Coy Reid said the battery thefts are likely the work of one person, and several other people are possibly responsible for the home break-ins.
Incident reports from the Catawba County Sheriff's Office indicate that majority of the larcenies occurred while the victims' boats were docked near Fighting Creek Road, Radford Court and Stonewall Street.
Reid said perpetrators who steal batteries usually recycle the battery's lead core and sell the lead for 30 cents per pound. Boat batteries cost about $100 each.
Because of the ease of stealing the batteries, Reid said it's possible one person is responsible for the larceny string.
"It's pretty easy to pop those things out," Reid said of boat batteries. "(The unknown suspect) knows what they want."
There are no suspects and no witnesses to the crimes, Reid said.
Majority of the victims noticed the thefts when they tried to start their boat's ignition, and nothing happened. Reid said the offender probably chose this time of year to start stealing batteries because people use their boats less often in colder weather.
Only one of the four reports filed stated items other than the boat's battery were stolen. The victim also reported stolen 10 gallons of gas, a marine-grade fuel line, a mooring cover for a pontoon boat and a canvas tool bag containing assorted hand tools.
The stolen items were reported missing Oct. 25, but the last time the victim said the boat was secure Oct. 9. The damage could have occurred during a period of two weeks.
Also, several home break-ins were reported from Oct. 24-27 in the Sherrills Ford area. Reid said the people responsible for the break-ins probably aren't related to the person responsible for the battery thefts.
"We probably won't know for sure until we make an arrest," he said.
Most of the incidents include forcible entry into houses, which are located on Lake Buff Drive, Little Mountain Road and Hopewell Church Road.
Items stolen from residences include a wedding ring, tools and an all-terrain vehicle. The size and number of items stolen led police to believe more than one person is responsible for the crimes.
There are no suspects in the home break-ins. No one was injured during any of the incidents.
Anyone with information about the incidents reported in Sherrills Ford is asked to call the Catawba County Sheriff's Office at (828) 464-5241.

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