Suspect Electrocutes Himself While Stealing Wire from Electrical Box
The APD Property Crimes Unit arrested Randall Becker, 34, Friday morning after he walked out of a business with stolen copper in hand and fresh electrical burns from tampering with an electrical box inside the property. He has been treated for the burns and is now being held at the Metropolitan Detention and facing felony charges including commercial burglary, possession of burglary tools and an outstanding felony warrant.
APD Officers were alerted to the burglary-in-progress when they received a call about a man who had possibly electrocuted himself while stealing copper from an unoccupied building at 1001 Central Ave. NW. When officers arrived they saw Becker exiting the burglarized building with a trash can containing copper tubing, copper wire and burglary tools. When officers moved in to arrest Becker they located and removed what appeared to be a black handgun from his front waistband. The weapon was later identified as a pellet gun.
Police found that Becker had broken into the vacant building around midnight to steal copper from inside the property. While he was attempting to steal copper wire from an electrical box inside that building he caused an electrical reaction and sustained burns on his right arm and his eyes.
Becker then started a small fire on the floor of the business to keep warm and remained inside the building until he was arrested while leaving the property shortly after 8:00 a.m. Detectives say that the property suffered extensive damage caused by Becker during the burglary.
According to Metropolitan Detention Center records, Becker was recently arrested in December for commercial burglary. He has also been arrested for robbery and receiving and transferring a stolen motor vehicle in the past.
The building owner was notified of the incident and will now have to repair the damage done to her business.