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Cracking Down On Illegal Scrappers

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Tulsa County deputies and Tulsa police conducted a joint raid to stem the sale of stolen metal or cars to scrap yards. Tulsa County deputies and Tulsa police conducted a joint raid to stem the sale of stolen metal or cars to scrap yards.
State law says you don't need a title to sell a car more than 10 years old, just a hand written bill of sale will do. State law says you don't need a title to sell a car more than 10 years old, just a hand written bill of sale will do.
The idea of joint efforts like this one is to let thieves know law enforcement is aware of the problem. And, they are cracking down. The idea of joint efforts like this one is to let thieves know law enforcement is aware of the problem. And, they are cracking down.

Tulsa County deputies and Tulsa police conducted a joint raid on Wednesday in an effort to stem the sale of stolen metal or cars to scrap yards. News On 6 crime reporter Lori Fullbright first reported in November on an increase in the number of broken down cars stolen from highways and sold to car crushers by thieves looking to make a quick buck. In her follow-up, she finds law enforcement cracking down on that type of activity.

Deputies and police were all over North Peoria, stopping anyone who had a traffic violation. They found plenty, and that allowed them to check people hauling scrap metal to one of three salvage yards located in the area near 66th Street North.

Scrap metal prices have gone up a lot in the past year. And, that makes it enticing for thieves to grab something that doesn't belong to them to turn a quick profit.

"A car, bring it here, 10 minutes worth of work and you make $250 to $300 pretty easily. Not a whole lot of documentation required," said Tulsa County Sheriff's Sgt. Bob Darby.

State law says you don't need a title to sell a car more than 10 years old, just a hand written bill of sale will do. A new law does require documentation for anyone hauling 10 pounds or more of copper, but that hasn't been as big an issue as some other items.

"Gotten reports of some businesses, like aircraft businesses that have lost some magnesium blocks, pieces of aluminum they set out and didn't deem as scrap, but set outside their yard," said Tulsa County Sheriff's Sgt. Bob Darby.

The idea of joint efforts like this one is to let thieves know law enforcement is aware of the problem. And, they are cracking down. They hope the crooks will think twice about breaking the law.

"We're here, we're not going anywhere. You can play the right way or face the consequences. You're right, we're not letting them know what day we're gonna be here, could be any day of the week," said Tulsa County Sheriff's Sgt. Bob Darby.

Since people didn't have to have titles on the old cars they were hauling to the crusher on Wednesday, officers wrote down VIN numbers, and if a car later comes up stolen, they'll at least have a record of who sold it.

The deputies hope lawmakers will tighten up some of these documentation requirements in the future.

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