Thieves target Toledo businessman's air conditioner

Edward Deeb.
Edward Deeb.
Reported by Lisa Rantala -

Posted by Nick Dutton - email

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTOL) - A Toledo businessman becomes the latest target for some thieves and he can't believe what they managed to steal in broad daylight.

Police say two brothers lifted the shop's air conditioning units in the 2400 block of West Laskey. They say thieves are getting bolder, so business and homeowners need to get smarter.

Now that the price for certain metals are up, they've seen these AC thefts jump by 400 percent.

Salon owner Edward Deeb got a call from a neighboring businesses around noon on Monday when his shop was closed.

"She says, 'Ed are you having anyone working on your ac?' I said no. She said 'well somebody's loading them."

Police say 28-year-old John Gregory and his younger brother smoked heroin, drove through the area and stopped at Deeb's Salon.

"One was covering his head with a newspaper so he couldn't be seen from the street," says Deeb.

Once they cut the AC lines, police say the two confessed to loading them up in their explorer and trying to sell them for scrap. But police say these big daytime heists can be quite common.

"If you're up on a rooftop and you look like you're working on an air conditioning unit when in fact you're stealing it, many people won't call it in," says Toledo Police Sgt. Chris Delaney.

So they offer some advise. They say business owners should put their air conditioners on the roof. That way they'll be out of reach. And homeowners should keep their electrical boxes locked.

"They have to turn the power off to cut it off or else risk electrocution," says Delaney.

Deeb now hopes to get his two units replaced before giving his next haircut. But he also worries if the criminals are this brazen, what else are they capable of.