Mason Paul Crooks, 28, of Orange, was indicted on Wednesday by the Jefferson County Grand Jury for stealing copper wire. The charge is felony Theft, a third degree felony.
Crooks was arrested for on March 28, 2022, according to the affidavit for arrest presented to the jury, when a Jefferson County Sheriff’s Deputy spotted Crooks and another man at almost midnight at the 6800 block of Twin City Hwy in Beaumont with a flashlight. Due to recent copper wire thefts in the area, the deputy stopped the individuals. On a lowboy attached to the truck the men were standing near, the deputy saw approximately 300-500 feet of copper wire that was cut into 20-30 foot sections.
Crooks told the officer he had spotted the wire on his way back from fishing earlier in the day and went to Orange to pick up the other man. Crooks admitted to loading the wire onto the lowboy and stated he did not know to whom it belonged.
A search of the area lead to the discovery of a backpack located on the opposite side of a wire fence where the officer initially spotted the light from the flashlight. Near the location was a wooden utility pole with fresh holes cut into the wood starting at the base and continuing to near the top of the pole. More wire matching the sheathed wire on the lowboy was also found in the area.
Both men admitted to not having permission to take the wire. The wire was property of ATT and the loss suffered amounted to $51,962.
A grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.