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People suffering in the bad economy do the strangest things

stolen-lamp-post.jpg…especially when they live in Miami, Florida. That’s where 42-year-old Elio Valero was busted for stealing a street lamp. One of the big 40 foot suckers.

The cops saw a minivan driving down the street with a huge light pole strapped to its roof which, you know, totally isn’t suspicious. They pulled Valero over as he was pulling up to a recycling center, and he said that he was disabled and hard-up for cash thanks to the poor economy. Then he laid out this interesting argument:

Hey, if I’m doing this to recycle, everybody else should do what they damn need to.

I’m not exactly sure what his point is, but I’m sold.

As for how he got the pole, Valero said it had been laying on the ground for a few months and once nobody bothered to pick it up, he took business into his own hands.

And here’s the kicker:

While police were arresting Valero, a second man, Joseph Moniz, 39, came peddling a manhole cover to the recycling center. Officers promptly arrested him.

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Comments

This doesn't surprise me - I am working on a construction project and we have aluminium sidewalk that is always getting taken. We had these two guys on camera hauling the stuff away and we caught them just walking aorund town with it, dumbasses. Its worth a lot of cash apparently.

This is nothing new at all in Baltimore. Cops have even caught individuals hacking apart a guard rail along the highway to sell the metal for drug money. Try getting a plumber in Baltimore. You can't because everytime they go into a shop, everything is stolen off their trucks.

It doesn't seem like it would be that hard to station a police officer at each recycle station. I mean, there can't be that many of them. Then they can arrest anyone who shows up with a manhole cover or stripped out city wire. They could even arrest recycling center workers who accept them.

One of my friends used to swipe the covers off the below ground gas tanks at the gas station, then use his hard earned recycling money to buy weed. (Super responsible, I know.)

What always amazed me was that the people at the recycling center just took the cover, and handed him cash, no questions... because, apparently, it's totally normal to recycle a giant aluminum disc stamped "Chevron."