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Thieves steal heavy steel beams from land owner’s bridge

October 31, 2012
Morning Journal News

FRANKLIN SQUARE - Within the past week thieves pulled nearly 25 to 30 pieces of heavy, 10-foot long steel beams from the top of a bridge spanning a creek in the 37000 block of state Route 344 in Leetonia.

Salem Township Constable Dan Valentine received a report at 3:31 p.m. Monday from Larry Watkins advising him the steel beams, which were on top of the bridge that provided access from Lisbon Canfield Road to state Route 344, were stolen.

Valentine's report said, "The pieces are about 10 feet long and are very heavy which would require two or more people to load them."

The beams were bolted down and four were left in place by the thieves because they apparently couldn't undo them, Valentine said, adding they probably weighed about 100 pounds each.

"Almost 3,000 pounds," Valentine said, "so it's over a ton."

Steel scrap sells for about $230 to $250 a ton and there are a number of scrap dealers in the area. Valentine checked two scrap yards to see if the steel had been sold locally, but neither one had anyone come in with steel beams.

Valentine said the property owner said it would cost about $1,000 to redo the bridge which he built himself about 12 or 15 years ago.

The bridge was covered over with growth and Valentine said it can't be seem from the road, "so whoever did it knew it was there."

He explained that whoever did it might sit on the material for a while or cut it down to make it "less suspicious" when they try selling it.

Anyone with information can call Valentine at 330-427-0808.

Larry Shields can be reached at



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