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In the city of Dry Ridge, criminals are having a field day. I am co-owner of a recycling center in Dry Ridge. Last month, thieves stole copper wire from our business. On the night they began their escapades, they were stopped by a Williamstown policeman, who discovered the wire in the back of their vehicle. For reasons that have still not been explained to me, the thieves were allowed to return the stolen material and leave without even a citation. In our security camera video, we see the policeman actually showing one of the thieves exactly where our camera is positioned.
We were not even notified that someone had attempted to rob us. Two nights later, the same thieves returned to steal the same material again. They returned several more nights for more thievery. Once we discovered our material had been tampered with, we were able to view the thieves on our security cameras. We have the evidence, which we then reported to the police. There was conversation, but nothing was done. Finally, we hired our own security guard, who caught the men in our yard the first night he was employed.
We called the police, who came in force and found them hiding close by. However, the area where they were found was not searched and no pictures were taken of the scene or of any stolen material. The criminals were arrested and yes, they were identical to the men the policeman originally let go.
Our requests for information about the officer involved and the status of the criminals have been politely but consistently rebuffed. Yet ironically, police from all over the area come to our yard looking for stolen material regularly. We work with them in every situation, and at our expense, to help them recover stolen property. So I am shocked at the lack of police interest in this case.
We were not informed of the initial robbery. The thieves were let go. We have video footage of their repeat crimes, yet no one has asked for a copy to be used in prosecuting those crimes. I was given the name of the officer in charge of our case, only to learn he went on a two week vacation. I learned that the men involved were released from jail with no bond. Today I discovered one has already been let loose with probation, though he had several prior arrests for theft. Iʼve been told that neither man can be charged for the initial theft because the policeman let them go.
What kind of conduct is this for a protector of the people and why does he still have a job? Why would someone be assigned a case when they were leaving on vacation? Why would the criminals be allowed to reach a plea agreement before all evidence was gathered and a meeting held between victim and the police working the case?
I have since learned that there is only one Dry Ridge policeman and he works weekdays 8-4. Williamstown police cover Dry Ridge from 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. This means that for six hours of every 24 hour weekday period, there is no actual police protection for the area. We are a growing city on a major interstate with no police force to speak of. As a business owner, I find this situation unfathomable, and as a citizen, unforgivable.
Stanco Equipment Co., Inc.