Rancho Santa Fe Patrol reports unique thefts

The RSF Patrol reported on its blog site July 21 that it has taken reports for the theft of “Back flow Preventer Manifolds,” the U-shaped pipe object coming out of the ground — usually near a water meter.”

“It’s made to prevent water back-flowing through the pipes into one’s plumbing.” The pipes are being stolen for the brass or copper value of the metal, according to the Patrol.

The stolen valves are taken to a metal recyclers and the crooks try to get cash for them, the Patrol blog said. Changes in the laws prevent an immediate handout of cash — the recycling dealer has to take the person’s name and information and contact the authorities before handing over the cash, according to the Patrol.

The Patrol said both cases it investigated occurred late at night. If anyone sees a car or truck stopped on the side of the road that looks suspicious, call the Patrol at 858-756-4372.

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