Thieves target grain elevators in rural Kansas

Published On: Feb 15 2014 03:41:20 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 17 2014 06:46:26 PM CST

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) - Authorities in south-central Kansas say they are seeing more burglaries at rural elevators, where thieves are mostly stealing tools and other equipment.

David Kaiser is the location manager at Cairo Coop. In the last year his facility has been burglarized twice. The second time thieves took a tire changer, hand tools and cash.

"It was one frustrating morning when I came in ready to work and found out we'd been robbed," Kaiser said.

Dustin Cooke, an investigator with the Kingman County Sheriff's Office, says at least 15 burglaries reported in recent months at elevators from the Colorado border to Kingman County have involved the theft of tire changers.
Reno County Sheriff's Department Capt. Steve Lutz says no one has been arrested in any of the burglaries, and none of the stolen items have been recovered.
They are urging elevator operators to improve security and take other steps to make the thefts more difficult. That's what Kaiser did at Cairo Coop. After the second break in he installed video and audio surveillance equipment.

"We haven't had any more problems since then," Kaiser said.