Georgia News Rack Thieves Sentenced

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By: E&P Staff

Two men have drawn sentences of 10 and 12 months’ probation and $1,000 and $500 fines for stealing two news racks belonging to The Albany (Ga.) Herald, the paper reported Sept. 30. A third person’s sentence is pending.

In April, a carrier reported to police the theft of the coin-operated boxes from two grocery stores. The stores’ video cameras recorded three men loading the racks into an SUV. When located, the vehicle’s owner confessed and identified the two others, also telling police that they dropped the racks from a bridge. Police found the racks in the creek below.

Herald Circulation Director Michael Hill told his newspaper that missing newspaper racks are often found on roadsides with their money still inside. “Most of the time [thieves] will steal them and then they can’t get it open,” he’s quoted saying. “Unless you have a lot of the right tools, it is really difficult to break into a newspaper rack. It really is a waste of time.”

Added Herald Circulation Manager Belinda Walker: “People also don’t realize that there is a $1,000 fine, and you can serve up to a year in jail for stealing just one newspaper.”

Because the news racks’ coin boxes are regularly emptied, thieves have little to gain by stealing them.

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