May 24, 2013 1:22 PM
The Tehama County Sheriff’s Department is actively investigating a grand theft at the California Almond Packers facility on 21275 Simpson Rd Yesterday. According to the Sheriff’s Department’s press release, an employee from the facility reported an unknown number of suspects had entered the property and stole a 350-gallon diesel fuel trailer with fuel, a propane tank with 100 feet of hose, a 28-gallon fuel caddy, a 110 CC motorcycle, two golf cart batteries and an aluminum motorcycle ramp. The value of all the listed items totals $4,250.00.
On May 17, deputies responded to a “suspicious circumstance” in an orchard at 2149 Simpson Rd. Employees from the orchard stated they had locked the 350-gallon fuel trailer near the fuel storage tank on the orchard. Employees confirmed with deputies the trailer did not belong to the orchard. Deputies took the trailer as found property and stored it at the Tehama County Sheriff’s Office.
Employees from California Almond Packers identified the fuel trailer as belonging to them and it was returned. There was no fuel in the fuel trailer when the deputies located it. Sheriff’s Deputies are actively investigating this incident and arrests are hopeful. Anyone with any information regarding the crime is encouraged to contact the Tehama County Sheriff’s Office 530 529-7900.
Action News has been following similar thefts in Glenn County throughout the month of May. On May 9, Michael Vereschagin of Vereschagin farms reported the theft of nearly 700 gallons of red-dye fuel from a holding tank, totaling a loss of $2,200. On May 14, another Glenn County farmer advised Glenn County Sheriff’s someone within the last two months had stolen 300 gallons from one of his fuel tanks, totaling $800. A Daniel Suhire of Glenn County reported on May 18 his fuel tank was stolen from his property containing 350 gallons of diesel fuel, totaling $2,700 and making the total of all three thefts $5,700
Sgt. Todd James of the Glenn County Sheriff’s Department told Action News stated there was no evidence to suggest the thefts were done by the same thieves. James stated said these thefts are not common on a yearly basis, but sometimes occur this time of year as the planting season gets going. James also indicated. He said when they have caught thieves in the past, the main motivation behind the crime was for thieves to sell the fuel to help fund further criminal activities. There are no leads at this point.
The Butte and Colusa County Sheriff Departments have not received reports of major fuel thefts this month.