Thieves peel copper from historic domes

Nov. 30, 2010 at 1:51 PM
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KANSAS CITY, Mo., Nov. 30 (UPI) -- Kansas City, Mo., will pay approximately $80,000 to replace copper sheeting peeled off by thieves from historic structures, city officials said.

Approximately 35 percent of the 100-year-old copper covering two domes in a colonnade in Kessler Park was stolen in the last few weeks and was most likely sold as scrap metal, the Kansas City Star reported Tuesday.

"The domes are pretty big, and the copper isn't cheap," said the city's natural resources manager, Forest Decker.

The city might choose a different metal for the repair project scheduled for this winter, the Star reported.

Thieves continually steal brass and copper from city fountains and pools, so the city doesn't replace those metals anymore.

The city is installing security cameras in the park to prevent future thefts, the Star reported.

"It looks scalped. It's just shredding," said Marian Wegener, a resident who serves with the Pendleton Heights Neighborhood Association, likening the domes' appearance to a bad sunburn.

Wegener said she believes elected officials should pass tougher laws on scrap dealers.

"They're paying the criminals to take our stuff," she said.

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