LOS ANGELES - Verizon is offering a $10,000 reward to anyone with information that leads to the arrest and conviction of culprits responsible for recent thefts and vandalism of the company's telephone cable in Southern California.
During the past month, hundreds of feet of underground and aerial copper cable have been cut and stolen. The criminal acts have caused significant telephone service delays for thousands of Verizon customers, and thousands of dollars of damage in Riverside County, Chino Hills, Pomoma and Rancho Cucamonga.
"We will not tolerate these deliberate and malicious acts of violence against our telephone network and our customers," said Deb Anders, Verizon region president. "Not only does the vandalism and theft affect our customers' ability to place normal calls, but it jeopardizes their use of 911 service during emergencies."
In five of the six cases, the copper cables were cleanly cut with professional cable cutters and stolen from telephone poles and from underneath the street. In the two most recent cases, the underground cables were cut, but not completely removed through the manholes that had been opened with professional tools. In one case, 30-feet of cable had been removed before it was abandoned. Each of the cables was several feet long, up to nine inches thick and weighed tons.
Since early June, the following criminal acts have occurred in Southern California:
- June 6 in Perris -- A 180-foot active aerial cable serving 400 customers was cut and stolen.
- June 7 Pomona -- A 700-foot underground cable serving 200 customers was cut and stolen.
- June 14 in Marino Valley, Riverside County, near March Air Force Base -- A 500-foot inactive underground cable was cut and stolen.
- June 24 in Chino Hills -- A 780-feet active underground cable serving 600 customers was cut and stolen.
- July 10 in Rancho Cucamonga -- A 700-feet active underground cable serving 4,000 customers was cut.
- July 15 in Bel Air -- A 750-foot active underground cable serving 900 customers was cut. About 30 feet of cable was pulled out of the vault before it was abandoned.
Anyone with information about these incidents should call their local police department or Verizon Security at 909-629-5811.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 112 million access line equivalents and 27 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. A Fortune 10 company with approximately 260,000 employees and more than $65 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.