Police: Copper thieves caught red-handed at Mt. Pleasant hotel
MT. PLEASANT, SC (WCSC) - Mt. Pleasant police say they arrested three copper thieves and are looking for one more that ran from them at the Masters Inn on Wednesday morning.
Officers arrested 61-year-old Robert Weston, 45-year-old Dwayne Cochran, and 52-year-old Leonard Wolcott around 4 a.m. They were each charged with second-degree burglary, possession of burglary tools, and malicious damage to property.
According to a police report, an officer was patrolling Wingo Way near the Masters Inn a little before 4 a.m. because of reported copper thefts at the hotel over the past few weeks. The officer said he noticed a "dust cloud" coming from the inn so he pulled into the parking lot.
The officer said he made his way to the back of the inn, where he found Weston and Cochran standing outside a first-floor hotel room. As he approached, the officer said another man stepped out of a black Nissan Pathfinder parked in front of the room, and then a fourth man walked out of the room holding a copper pipe in his hands.
Police said one of the suspects, Wolcott, tried to run upstairs to hide on the second floor, but he was found hiding in a room almost immediately. Wolcott first gave officers a fake name, Paul Murphy, so he was also charged with giving false information to police, the report states.
One other suspect was able to run off, leaving Weston and Cochran alone on the curb with police, according to the report. Major Stan Gragg said investigators were working to determine that suspect's identity.
Police said they found several copper pipes, along with several hand tools and a black crowbar, inside the first-floor hotel room.
Weston, Cochran, and Wolcott are being held in the Charleston County Detention Center.
If you have any information on the remaining suspect at large, call Crime Stoppers at 554-1111.
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