Louisa – Today, Louisa Commonwealth Attorney Rusty McGuire , announced that Joshua A. Kober, 26, Mineral, was sentenced to 3 years and 7 months in jail for stealing junk cars, drug charges and a probation violation.
The property where the cars were taken was vacant since the owner passed away a few years ago and another family member checked on the property, noticing that old junk cars were missing recently. The family member called the Louisa County Sheriff's Office and Detective Mark Stanton set up surveillance on the property. He noticed a wrecker arrive and load up another car. He stopped the vehicle and arrested Mr. Kober at the scene. Detective Stanton then identified Kober as the person on stole the vehicles on the previous occasions.
Foreclosures, relocations, vacations and even death of a family member create vacant properties that are targets for criminals. Two people and a pickup truck can steal your outdoor air conditioning unit in five minutes. They sell air conditioning units and other scrap metal for a handful of dollars at scrapyards but it will cost you thousands to replace them. Major Donnie Lowe of the Louisa County Sheriff's Office recommends that “citizens should write down serial numbers of their valuable property, make sure neighbors are watching the house when they're not around and activate their home security systems when they are away. Specifically, air conditioning units are sought after and vacant home owners should consult with their electricity provider about restricting access to the exterior breaker.” These efforts will reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim and help law enforcement solve the case if there is a crime.
Speaking on the convictions, McGuire said “we are seeing a rise in thefts at vacant properties and we hope this case sends a message that you will be held accountable when you target vacant homes. Anyone that is going away for an extended period of time, even as short as one week, and owners of vacant properties should be aware and take precautionary measures.”
Joshua Kober's complete sentence is 33 years with all but 2 years 9 months suspended on the new convictions and he received 10 more months for a probation violation that brings his total active sentence to 3 years 7 months.
“The Louisa County Sheriff's Office did an outstanding job in solving these cases. The successful prosecution of this case is owed, especially, to the excellent detective work of Mark Stanton” said McGuire.
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