Boise, April 1, 2013 - Boise Police have arrested two men in connection with a series of thefts of batteries taken off RV's and campers. Dozens of thefts of batteries have been reported throughout the city since January.
"These batteries do have value on the recycling market," said Boise Police Property Crimes Unit supervisor Sgt. Brian Lee. "The message is anything with a recycling value can be a target for thieves. The best action citizens can take is to carefully secure anything with copper or aluminum since the recycling value for these metals has risen in recent years."
Arrested: Timothy P. Barth, 32, Boise
Arrested: Joshua C Proto, 31, Boise
Arrested: Grand Theft (F)
What Happened: Boise Police began receiving reports of batteries stolen off RV's, campers, boats, and golf carts beginning shortly after January 1, 2013. All occurred in residential neighborhoods throughout the city.
Realizing the thefts may be connected and motivated by the recycling value of the batteries, Boise Police and the BPD Crime Prevention Unit issued alerts to citizens In February through local media, social media and Neighborhood Watch groups to be on the watch for potential suspects as well as issuing advice for citizens on how to protect their property.
Investigation: Officers in the Boise Police Property Crimes Unit and Patrol developed leads on potential suspects. Officers information was forwarded to the Ada County Prosecutors Office, who issued warrants for the arrest of the two suspects. At this time, officers believe the suspects Barth and Proto are responsible for a majority of the recent reported thefts.
Boise Police arrested Barth March 21, 2013. Proto was arrested March 29th, 2013. Both were arrested on warrants issued by the Ada County Prosecutor on the above charges.
Crime Prevention Tips: Boise Police have the following tips:
- Chain the battery with the propane tank (all in one) to the tongue
- Remove the battery and take it into the garage for safe keeping and so the battery doesn’t freeze. Also, keep the battery charged to a 1 amp charger to keep it healthy
- If RV or boats are kept in a storage facility and the battery was not secured or removed, owners are advised to take time to go and check and secure the battery. Although no battery thefts have been reported from secure storage areas, Boise Police advise owners to take this precaution.
Boise Police want to thank local Neighborhood Watch groups who have shared this information to help safeguard neighbor's property.