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WEST POINT — Police agencies in Davis County believe the same people may be responsible for a number of recent thefts of car and RV batteries.
Over the past two weeks, batteries have been stolen from four motor homes in West Point, plus an RV in Clinton. There was another attempted theft in Clinton, plus a major heist in Layton where somebody broke into the back lot of Sam's Club and took 30 used batteries.
"We're concerned about why and what they're being used for," said Davis County Sheriff's Sgt. Susan Poulsen.
It's perplexing to investigators, because why the batteries are being stolen remains unclear. Poulsen said it is possible the metal inside the batteries was being sold for scrap, but it would only yield $0.22 to $0.30 per pound.
"So they're probably only coming away with a few dollars per battery," Poulsen said.
Lt. Garrett Atkin said detectives in his city were also perplexed. In the theft at the Sam's club, the suspects had to cut a lock on a gate.
In West Point, Davis County Sheriff's Capt. Kenny Payne was one of the victims.
Payne had recently put his motorhome trailer along the side of the street in hopes someone would see the "For Sale" sign and buy it. When a couple inquired, he noticed the two batteries at the front of his motorhome were missing from their cases.
"When I talked to detectives they said you're victim number four in the West Point area for somebody stealing RV batteries off of trailers," Payne recalled.
Payne said because there were other victims besides him involved, he felt especially inclined to follow through and do all he could to find those responsible. They're fingerprinting some of the evidence now.
"We took the battery boxes, lids and everything else and took it down to the crime lab and they put it in the fuming chamber," Payne said. "Sodium hydroxide and super glue don't mix — they mix as sort of a white smoke fume and it loves fingerprints."
The results of those tests were pending, Payne said.
Poulsen said deputies had few other leads. She believed there could be other victims out there already, since people often do not regularly check their RVs to see if batteries have been stolen.