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Thieves target copper at Big Island park

HILO >> Thieves stealing copper at a Big Island park may have caused as much as $2,000 damage.

Hawaii County Parks and Recreation spokesman Jason Armstrong says the thieves cut pipes and stole spigots at Onekahakaha Beach Park in Hilo.

A parks department employee arrived Wednesday to clean a restroom. He turned on water and it started shooting out of pipes.

Armstrong says county workers restored water service to park bathrooms at about 11:30 a.m. but drinking fountains can’t be used until additional repairs are complete.

Metal theft has increased with a rise of scrap metal prices. The FBI says the price of copper rose 500 percent between 2001 and 2008.

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