Hoquiam investigators are working to identify a second person responsible for nearly $5,000 in metal cuttings heads and brackets that were scrapped for 139.60 recently. Chief Jeff Myers tells us a scrap processing company in Hoquiam notified Officer Hergert after a suspicious purchase last week. The cutting heads were still in bubble wrap, and a box of brackets still had a shipping label addressed to Vaughn Pump in Montesano.
Antonio B. Sarabia, age 22 of Aberdeen, was arrested and booked into the Grays Harbor County Jail for Trafficking in Stolen Property 1st Degree after he sold $4,500 in machine cutting-heads stolen from Vaughn Pump for $139.60 in scrap.
Myers said on January 30, 2014 at about 10 A.M. employees at a scrap processing company in Hoquiam notified Officer Hergert of a suspicious purchase which had come in just prior to closing the day before.
Officer Hergert examined a brass propeller, a box of orange shelf brackets and another box of machined solid metal pipe boring cutting heads. The cutting heads appeared to be new as they were still in a box in bubble wrap. The box of shelf brackets still had a shipping label attached for Vaughn Pump in Montesano.
The propeller, shelf brackets and cutter heads had been sold by Antonio Sarabia for a total of $139.60 in scrap.
Officer Hergert contacted Vaughn Pump which verified the shelf brackets and cutting heads were from the company. They reported a series of ongoing thefts where these sort of industrial items had come up missing. No one knew Sarabia nor had he been given permission to possess or sell the equipment.
The 140 shelf brackets had a total value of around $280 while the 19 cutter heads were valued at $4,500. Ownership of the propeller was not determined.
Sarabia admitted he knew the items were stolen. He indicated he was tasked to sell the stolen items and split the proceeds with another person. Sarabia denied he had stolen the items himself.
Sarabia was booked for Trafficking in Stolen Property in the First Degree which is a Class B felony. The investigation is ongoing to identify the other person involved.