Friday, July 22, 2011
Farm thefts are rising, and as usual there's no place quite like California
Farm thefts are on the rise, and in California they're even stealing grapes and bees, Jesse McKinley reports from Bakersfield for The New York Times. "Fighting them has become harder in many parts of California as many grants for rural law enforcement have withered on the vine," he writes.
Agricultural larceny happens almost everywhere, but "Few areas can claim a wider variety of farm felons than California, where ambushes on everything from almonds to beehives have been reported in recent years," McKinley writes. "Then there is the hardware: diesel fuel, tools and truck batteries regularly disappear in the Central Valley, the state’s agricultural powerhouse, where high unemployment, foreclosures and methamphetamine abuse have made criminals more desperate, officials say." (Read more)