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The LA Times reports that copper thieves have been stealing the wire from streetlights in areas across the city where they think they can get away with it. Scratch that, where they can get away with it.

The bikepath along the LA River was such a target that the City of LA's Department of Public Works welded the boxes at the base of the streetlights shut. Didn't work. The copper thefts continued.

At at press conference, the public works folks announced that 700 streetlights are currently out due to copperwirelessness. That's out of 242,000, which isn't all that bad, right? Except that the places they're out are fairly concentrated. Take this quote the LA Times got from a resident at hard at work in the dark at 12th and Soto in East LA:

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When you don't have light in the streets you can have an accident, especially when you have people who are drinking liquor and walking in the street.

Now that's a public need. More lights for wandering drunks! Less lights for sleeping suburbanites! Come on, copper bandits, go hit Toluca Lake or something.