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Four facing charges after theft of copper from Arnolt building in Warsaw

A Goshen man has been arrested and three Kosciusko County residents have warrants out for their arrests in connection to the theft of copper and other items from the abandoned Arnolt Corp. building in Warsaw.

Judd Emery Metz, 50, Goshen, was booked into the Kosciusko County Jail at 2:37 p.m. Tuesday for burglary. His bond was set at $3,000 surety and $2,500 cash.

Court documents filed April 2 list the charges against Metz as burglary, a level 5 felony, and theft, a level 6 felony.

Mitchell Allen Dawson, 37, of 5829 W. CR 100N, Warsaw, is facing charges of burglary, a level 5 felony, and theft, a level 6 felony. His bond is fixed at $3,000 surety and $2,500 cash.

Kylelaya Duff, 34, of 702 Ross Ave., Warsaw, is facing charges of burglary, a level 5 felony, and theft, a level 6 felony. His bond is fixed at $3,000 surety and $2,500 cash.

Allison N. Foster, 31, of 1796 W. Maple Lane, Claypool, is facing a charge of aiding, inducing or causing theft, a level 6 felony. Her bond is fixed at $3,000 surety and $2,500 cash.

Warsaw Police Department officer Brad Kellar received information of a burglary and theft from Arnolt Corp. in Warsaw. He spoke with James Walmer, the caretaker of Arnolt Corp., who requested the people entering the building and stealing items be held responsible. He said they had stolen copper wire and other metals. Walmer said no one had been given permission to be inside or remove anything from the building.

Officers placed surveillance cameras at Arnolt Corp. and on Jan. 21 got a photograph of a person at the building. Video showed several people at the building with their faces covered and one person with glasses and a gray beard; he was identified as Metz.

On Jan. 24 Kellar spoke with Metz, who admitted that sometime between Jan. 14-24 he entered the building. The same day he found a lot of copper lying beside Clunette Road just off Ind. 15. He said he sold that copper.

Kellar learned that on Jan. 21, Metz sold $342.05 of copper to Lewis Salvage. From November to January, Metz sold $907.97 worth of copper and other metals to Lewis Salvage.

Kellar also spoke with Dawson and told him that tools with his name on them were found inside the Arnolt building. Court documents state Dawson admitted that he, Metz and Duff went into the Arnolt building and used his tools to remove the copper from the pipes. Dawson said Duff opened a transformer to get the copper and oil spilled. He said they stripped about $10,000 of copper from the building over  two months.

Dawson also admitted that Duff had his girlfriend, Foster, sell the copper at Lewis Salvage. He said copper bars were sold at Rochester Iron and Metal. Dawson also said he stole a tractor hood and antique items from the Arnolt building. He provided the hood to Kellar.

On Jan. 28 Kellar spoke with Duff, who admitted he went inside the Arnolt building several times. He said he knew they were going to tear the building down and wanted to try to get the rights to remove the scrap from the building. He said he was in the building in summer 2018 and two or three other times, including January. He said he had touched and looked at the transformers in the building. He said Lewis Salvage “hassles” him when he tries to sell items to them so he has Foster sell for him.

On Jan. 28 Kellar spoke with Foster, who said she sold scrap metal to Lewis Salvage that Duff had obtained. She said she did not know where the metal came from.

Kellar contacted Lewis Salvage and found Foster sold 400 pounds of copper to them for $1,024.50 in December. From October through December, she sold over $1,900 in metal to the business.

When Lewis Salvage asked Foster where the copper came from, she would not answer, according to court documents.