Police search for gas thief caught on camera - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Police search for gas thief caught on camera

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

Chattanooga police are asking for your help catching a gas thief before he strikes again.

Police say a man, seen in surveillance video driving a red or maroon SUV, is stealing gas from vehicles in Brainerd and Hamilton Place neighborhoods.

He's cutting the "filler hose" beneath the car and siphoning out the gas.

What makes this case strangely similar to a case police cracked in June.

"Gas now a days is quite expensive," said Sgt. Daniel Jones, Chattanooga Police Dept.

On several occasions police say a man has cut fuel lines to steal gas from vehicles parked outside Sulzer Nuclear Solutions on Caine Lane.

He either doesn't know, or doesn't care, that the crimes were being recorded.

"He actually came to that same place five different times and hit 6 different vehicles," said Jones. 

It's strangely similar to a case back in June. Police arrested 39-year-old Thomas Bouch in connection to more than a dozen gas theft cases in the same area.

"Same place where it occurred before," said Jones.

Mechanic Doug Bruggink showed Channel 3 how thieves cut the lines to steal gas.

"What they're doing is they're just going under here to this fuel line here and there's a rubber line, I got my hand on it here, and they're just cutting right through that, feeding whatever tool or gizmo they're using whether it's a pump or just a regular air siphon," said Doug Bruggink, Mechanic.

Police say the crime comes with a theft and vandalism charges because of the damage left behind.

That's why they're eager to put this suspect behind bars.

And they're hoping his SUV will help someone recognize him.

"If someone can call in and tell us that is our guy and they've seen him in that vehicle that will be enough to be able to go forward and make an arrest," said Jones.

The suspect is described as a white male with dark hair. His get-away car is a red or maroon SUV, possibly a Trailblazer or Tahoe.

If you have any information, call Chattanooga Police.

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