Copper thefts at Marian Center continue over weekend

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The home for a number of Milwaukee nonprofits is targeted once again by thieves. FOX6 News reported last week about the three sections of copper downspouts that were stolen at the Marian Center. Monday, October 20th, workers discovered another section was taken over the weekend.

The estimate for repairs related to last week's thefts will cost more that $1,200 to replace those gutters. They learned the scrap value of what was taken is about $100, so that was the incentive for someone to steal from a nonprofit -- and it happened again.

The Marian Center had set aside money to pave the parking lot, but not to replace 26 feet of copper downspouts.

"$1,200 is a good chunk of our budget because our budget is under $300,000, so it's a very large part of something we didn't anticipate," said Charlane O'Rourke Hertig, Marian Center Director.

The replacement tubes have been connected on the second floor, where last week the thief, or thieves, took three separate sections of downspouts. That repair bill got more expensive over the weekend.

"We know it was here on Friday because we've been more aware," said O'Rourke Hertig.

Monday, October 20th, workers found a 16 foot long section of the gutter missing on the third floor.

"Who these people are stealing from are the sisters who have given their lives to the good works, and this is sort of the payback and that's what's so frustrating," said O'Rourke Hertig.

The Marian Center currently rents out space to 35 different nonprofits. Up until 1991, it was a school and this Sunday, October 19th, happened to be the annual alumni reunion.

"they did a collection there because they were so outraged, why someone would steal from their school," O'Rourke Hertig said.

While the Marian Center's director is happy those donations will help offset the repairs, she's still upset someone would target their building in the first place.

"It's taking from people that are trying to make this world a better place," O'Rourke Hertig said.

St. Francis Police say this is very much an active investigation.

While there haven't been any arrests, police say there have been leads, which they're still following.