- Associated Press - Friday, September 18, 2015

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) - Copper thieves have hit a section on State Route 16 about 20 times in recent months, costing taxpayers about $170,000.

KING-TV reports (https://kng5.tv/1JeKCCT ) the thieves are tearing out the wiring for the lights along the highway. A four-mile stretch near Cheney Stadium in Tacoma is a favorite spot.

The Washington State Department of Transportation says every time they fix it, the thieves come back. In some cases, they believe the thieves pose as construction crews and steal the wire in the middle of the day.

WSDOT is questioning whether it’s worth replacing the wires and spending more taxpayer money on this losing battle.

Washington State Troopers have stepped up patrols in the area. They’ve also tried welding the boxes shut and putting locks on but nothing has helped.

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Information from: KING-TV, https://www.king5.com/

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