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Copper theft charges ensnare Maryland boy

Annapolis police recently arrested two people for stealing copper pipes from a construction site. One was a local 29-year-old man and the other suspect was not so expected -- his 11-year-old nephew. According to reports, the two have both been charged with two counts of theft, but the boy is being charged as a juvenile.

An eyewitness apparently saw the child and his uncle at the construction site and reported them to authorities. Shortly thereafter, police arrived at the scene where they found both individuals, including the boy who was inside the building. In total, the piping they were trying to take was worth over $1,000.

In recent years, copper theft has become a major target for law enforcement, since it is a very valuable metal. At this point, there is no indication what the motivation for these alleged actions.

Whatever the case, the young boy could face very serious penalties for his claimed role in this incident. He is being considered a juvenile, and since he is so young, hopefully the court will focus on rehabilitative versus punitive action if they find him guilty. The boy could be feeling the effects of this incident for many years, even if it wasn't his idea and he was just following his uncle's wishes.

In juvenile crimes, such as this, it's important to consider the long-term effects and legal options of a conviction. As the boy gets older and considers educational or professional opportunities, it may be critical to consider getting his record expunged or sealed. This will help ensure that he can be a contributing member of his community.

Source: WBAL-TV News, "Man, 11-year-old nephew arrested in Annapolis copper thefts," April 8, 2013

  • Our firm has experience handling a wide range of criminal charges. To learn more about the issues discussed in this post, please view our Maryland theft defense page.

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