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Fayette County man catches alleged burglar in the act

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By From Staff Reports
Monday, Dec. 31, 2012, 10:46 p.m.

A Masontown man was arrested for allegedly stealing copper wire and bolt cutters from a Fayette County natural gas pumping station thanks to an inquisitive neighbor.

Jerry L. Stewart, 30, faces charges of burglary, criminal trespass, theft, receiving stolen property, possession of an instrument of a crime, criminal mischief, defiant trespass and driving with a suspended license.

The incident occurred at a pumping station along Lutheran Church Road, German, around 3 p.m. Sunday.

State police said a man, whom they did not name, discovered a vehicle parked in his driveway and saw a single set of shoe prints leading from the vehicle to the pumping station. The man decided to investigate and found a hole was cut through the chain-link fence surrounding the station.

The witness then saw Stewart walking out of a utility trailer at the station, carrying copper wire and bolt cutters, police said.

Stewart ran when the witness tried to talk with him. The man chased and subdued Stewart and held him until police arrived.

Stewart is being held in the Fayette County jail after failing to post $50,000 bond.

He faces a preliminary hearing on Wednesday before Masontown District Judge Randy Abraham.

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