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Yonkers scrap metal theft nets arrests of 2 Queens men

Michael Sheppard, 27, left; and Calvin Doolittle, 27,

Michael Sheppard, 27, left; and Calvin Doolittle, 27, are accused of trying to steal pipes from a Yonkers storage yard. (Oct. 4, 2012) Photo Credit: Westchester County Police

Two Queens men have been charged in a break-in and attempted theft of steel pipes at a storage yard on the Saw Mill River Parkway in Yonkers, police said Thursday.

Michael Sheppard, 27, and Calvin Doolittle, 27, both of Astoria Boulevard, were charged with felony third-degree grand larceny, along with third-degree criminal trespass and criminal mischief, misdemeanors, Westchester County police spokesman Kieran O'Leary said.

At 11:37 p.m. Wednesday, Yonkers police received a 911 call from a resident who heard noise coming from the storage yard on the parkway at Tompkins Avenue, at the city's border with Hastings-on-Hudson, police said. Yonkers and county police responded and a county police officer saw two men running from the area. A van found at the scene held galvanized steel pipes, and a hole had been cut in the fence around the property, police said.

County police arrested Sheppard within minutes along Route 9A. Police searched the area but could not initially locate the second man, police said.

Doolittle, the van's owner, called police Thursday morning and claimed his van had been stolen, police said. He was interviewed at county police headquarters in Hawthorne and arrested.

The steel pipes have an estimated value of $5,000, police said, adding that they believe they were being stolen to be sold as scrap metal.

The storage yard, on the site of a former gas station, is owned by New York State and leased to an electrical contractor, police said.

Sheppard and Doolittle were awaiting arraignment in Yonkers City Court on Thursday afternoon, police said. No information on their lawyers was immediately available.

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