COLORADO SPRINGS — Over the last couple of months News5 has worked to keep you updated on an increasing number of construction site thefts happening in the Pikes Peak Region. Colorado Springs Police Department crime prevention officers say thanks to useful information provided by the public they're making progress in their investigations and have identified suspects.
Back in September we learned in the Pikes Peak Region investigators were working more than 250 construction site theft cases and losses totaled more than a million dollars. While these crimes remain a problem, public awareness and the presence of a Crime Stoppers effort are making a difference.
I just learned construction site theft arrests are now pending as investigators at the Colorado Springs Police Department have identified two suspects they believe are involved in multiple crimes at multiple scenes and investigators say they've already recovered about $41,000 worth of stolen items. Investigators say it wouldn't have been possible without the help of the public.
"Just being aware. You see something suspicious, you see someone driving around a construction site at 2:30 or 3 in the morning we need to know that and that's exactly what the community has done and we want to thank them," said M.J. Thomson of the Colorado Springs Police Department. "There is still a lot of work to do. This is by no means over. There are a lot of cases still to be looked at and hopefully more potential arrests, but right now with those arrests warrants forthcoming we are very satisfied with that."
You may have noticed signs being used at construction sites across the Pikes Peak Region reminding people they can turn in anonymous tips through the Crime Stoppers program to help crackdown on these costly crimes that ultimately get passed on to the consumer and create dangers for new neighborhoods.
"We know by virtue of what we've seen on the tip side it does seem to be a deterrent for theft and we are pleased with that," said Don Addy of Pikes Peak Area Crime Stoppers. "Prior to that thefts were running about seven or eight a week."
Through October of this year Pikes Peak Area Crime Stoppers reports there have been more than 18,000 anonymous tips of all kinds submitted to help law enforcement. That is a 10% increase from this time last year and so far this year 42 arrests have been the direct result of tips provided through the program.
"Everything is anonymous. That's the backbone of our system," said Addy. "The fact that we are getting more tips, to me is an indicator that our community is much more aware of what we provide and how we can help our community become safer."
There are still plenty of unsolved cases out there where the public can help investigators including a case in Cimarron Hills where a suspect driving a white pickup truck rammed an El Paso County Sheriff's Office patrol vehicle. Tips and information are still needed in this case.
Remember if you have information on this case or any others you can always remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 634-STOP and could be eligible for a cash reward. You can also visit https://www.crimestop.net/