Soaring gasoline prices are making thieves go to absurd, life-threatening lengths to steal gas.
After being victimized multiple times, one Salt Lake City business took action to stop thieves in their tracks.
And one thief has scars for this attempts to rob the business.
“A truck parked outside Summit Fire and Protection had already had its catalytic converter stolen and the gasoline siphoned out when another thief showed up Saturday, in broad daylight, and tried to steal the gas,” KSL.com reported.
However, the thief paid a costly price for the crime.
“Some people try to take the easy way out of everything,” said branch manager Travis Mills, showing surveillance video of the theft in progress.
Not long after 10 a.m. Saturday, Mills was notified about a gas theft from one of the trucks that also caught fire.
“The guy tried to siphon gas out of it and he wasn’t getting the siphon to work,” Mills said. “So he decided to drill the gas tank, and that’s when he caught on fire.”
On the surveillance video, you can see the thief underneath the work truck on the side of the gas tank. A white pickup truck is parked next to the work truck.
At one point, the thief pops up quickly with his shirt on fire and runs away from the truck. The thief had to stop, drop and roll across the parking lot before his accomplice picked him up and they escaped.
“The reason why he’s fleeing is that, if there were more gas in it than a gallon, this thing would have absolutely turned into a bomb,” the manager said. “It’s sad because times are tough for a lot of people, but it’s not worth the $5 that he would have saved for the injury that the guy sustained.”
The company has had multiple catalytic converter thefts and smash-and-grab thefts in recent years.
They put in a $30,000 security system before this happened. “It’s been extensive,” Mills said.