Warehouse is missing 12,000 pounds of copper tubing

Copper tubing was sold to a Columbus recycling business more than two months before two men were charged with bringing a trailer containing part of a $71,000 metal theft from Jacksonville, Fla., police said today. Charles W. Walker, 24, and his brother, Thaddus Walker, 22, were arrested at 8:30 a.m. Monday after a 2003 Chevy Silverado truck was stopped with a U-Haul attached on Moon Road at J.R. Allen Parkway. Both are charged with felony bringing stolen property into the state.

The elder brother waived his hearing in Recorder’s Court while the younger Walker pleaded not guilty. Judge Michael Cielinski ordered each held in the Muscogee County Jail on $25,000 bond and bound the charge over to Muscogee Superior Court.

Police Detective Len Wills told the court that a concerned resident called police and said two brothers were in possession of stolen copper. Police located the truck with a U-Haul trailer parked at a Whisper Drive home. Using information from the caller that Thaddus Walker had a suspended driver’s license, Wills said police stopped the vehicle as it traveled under the J.R. Allen bridge on Moon Road.

Police looked in the trailer and found the copper tubing. An investigation revealed the copper was stolen from H&M Warehousing in Jacksonville, Fla., but officials weren’t aware of the theft.

“It’s a big warehouse,” Wills said. “They didn’t realize at the time it was stolen.”

The warehouse is missing about 12,000 pounds of copper tubing, Wills said. Police seized about 4,500 pounds in the trailer.

Police believe about 2,600 pounds of copper was sold to ABC Metal in Columbus. Wills said 900 pounds were sold on Aug. 16 and another 1,700 pounds on Aug. 25. The metal was sold for $7,000 in cash.