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Suspected H-3 copper thief arrested by police

By Brenton Awa
Published On: May 13 2013 11:28:57 AM HST

An alleged copper crook with a complex plan. We're learning the great lengths one man reportedly went to for wiring along the H-3 Freeway in Hawaii.

HONOLULU -

A suspected copper crook who thought he was crafty was caught by the Honolulu Police Departments Crime Reduction Unit.

According to a report, on April 29, the unit was given information about a series of copper thefts along the H-3 freeway.

After a search of the area, police discovered holes in fences along Halawa Valley Access Road where copper had been taken from.  The unit posted overnight surveillance from May 2 through May 7.

Early Tuesday morning, one of the officers saw Gregg Humel riding his mountain bike up Iwaena street towards the Board of Water Supply's Xeriscape Garden.  He was then seen making his way around an opening in a fence leading to the garden.

That's when security cameras captured Humel going through the property.  Later, another officer saw Humel sneaking through a trail in the bushes, making his way under the H-3 freeway, and finally reaching the Halawa Valley Access Road.

The report says Humel went on to use an empty cart that he loaded up with copper from areas under the H-3.

Shortly before 6 a.m Tuesday, Humel was stopped by HPD and arrested for "Theft of Copper," in which he replied to the officers...

"I never steal the copper, I found it under the bridge," said Humel.

Gregg Humel's preliminary hearing is set for Monday. His bail is confirmed at $50,000.

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