Photo of two suspects in battery thefts in Douglas County
ATLANTA -- First it was copper, now thieves are after a much heavier target that they steal and sell to scrap yards.
At least two metro area counties are reporting an increase in the theft of truck batteries.
Thieves are after batteries from this truck, all of them...all of them weigh in excess of sixty pounds It's a lot of work to steal something like this, but the suspects in this case made it easy for sheriff's deputies by leaving a cell phone and pictures.
Dennis Stanley surveys the trucks around his repair shop, and discovers where thieves have left their mark.
"I hate to keep looking," he said. "I had about 40 stacked up, they unloaded every one of those, that was a good haul for them."
Dennis Stanley is just one of many victims caught up in the newest trend in crime.
Investigators in both Douglas and Fulton Counties have seen it. Since Georgia's crackdown on copper thefts, more and more criminals are after truck batteries, targeting them for the lead inside unlike copper or aluminum.
Georgia law will allow scrap yards to pay cash for the lead in batteries without the seller showing identification.
When Douglas County investigators came to survey all Dennis Stanley lost, they were quite interested in an item that wasn't supposed to be here. Near the spot where all the batteries were taken they found a cell phone with a picture.
Investigators posted it on the Sheriffs Department's Facebook page and in no time they had names for their two suspects.
Investigators in Douglas County say maybe it's time for lawmakers to do just what they did with copper, and make it more difficult for thieves to sell stolen batteries at scrap yards.