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June 06 12:43 PM

Three charged with copper thefts

Bossier City police arrested three people Monday in connection with a string of incidents involving the theft of copper welding leads from vehicles parked at local hotels.

Police arrested 32-year-old Christopher Glenn Harper, 31- year-old Tonya Marie Kinsey and 33-year-old Michael Paul Wertman, all of Haughton, La., on multiple charges.

The three were taken into custody just before 1 a.m. Monday after a Bossier City police officer working off duty security at the Microtel Inn and Suites in the 2700 block of Village Lane saw the suspects acting suspiciously around a welding truck in the parking lot.

The officer stopped the suspects in their SUV as they left the parking lot and recovered two spools of welding leads, along with two wheel rims and tires.

An investigation found one of the spools came from the truck at the Microtel Inn and the other had been taken during another theft that occurred earlier that evening at a different location.

Police learned that the rims and tires had been stolen earlier that night from a vehicle in the parking lot of the Comfort Suites hotel in the 7900 block of East Texas Street.

Along with the stolen property, police also recovered a small amount of marijuana from inside the suspects’ SUV.

A subsequent investigation by detectives with the Property Crimes Unit linked the three suspects to at least six recent cases in Bossier City involving the theft of copper welding leads from welding trucks.

Kinsey’s 9-month-old daughter was in the SUV with the suspects and was placed in the custody of a relative.

The trio were booked into the Bossier City Jail on charges of theft, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a controlled dangerous substance in the presence of a minor.

Harper was also found to have an outstanding warrant from Caddo Parish.

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