The theft occurred around 5:15 a.m. at the glass plant, 14700 W. Schulte Road, sheriff’s spokesman Les Garcia stated in a press release Monday, Feb. 4.
According to Beth Peery, communications manager for the company’s North America division, said on Tuesday, Feb. 5, that Sunday’s armed robbery was the seventh such crime at the plant in “recent months” and the fourth during which the alleged thieves were armed.
“This has definitely been ongoing and caused great concern,” she said.
Peery said she didn’t know what was stolen during the previous burglaries.
Security officials at the plant reportedly told deputies they conducted an extensive search of the facility Sunday, but the men were not located.
Garcia said on the telephone Tuesday that he did not know what the stolen material was used for at the plant. He said the wire was a two-foot section of platinum and rhodium wire.
The Tracy plant creates iconic glass containers for the food, beer, wine, spirits and non-alcoholic beverage industry, according to its website. A Google search showed that the type of wire allegedly stolen is used in high temperature processes that involve heat up to 3,100 degrees.
A plant employee told deputies on Sunday that he came across two men inside a plant stairwell carrying the wire, the release states.
He told deputies that one of the thieves had pulled out a black handgun and gestured with his finger over his mouth for the employee to keep quiet, before both men ran down the stairwell.
The gunman was described as black, 30s, wearing all dark clothing and a white bandana over his face, while the other man was described as black, 30s, with similar clothing, wearing a black bandana over his face.
The two men from Sunday’s robbery were not captured. Security officials at the plant reportedly told deputies they conducted an extensive search of the facility after the men were seen running from the employee, but the men were never located.
Anyone with information about the theft should contact the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Department at 468-4414.
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