Man dies, woman injured, while trying to steal copper tubing, police say
By Daily News Wire Services
Posted: 10/23/2010 11:48:00 PM PDT
Updated: 10/23/2010 11:53:09 PM PDT
SOUTH GATE — A man died and a woman was critically burned Saturday, apparently while trying to steal copper wire from an electrical vault that exploded in South Gate, and their two young children, who were at the scene, were placed in protective custody, police said.
The explosion was reported at 4:14 p.m. near 3064 Firestone Blvd., according to the South Gate Police Department.
Arriving officers found two people next to a burning electrical vault, police said.
The man died at the scene and the woman was taken to St. Francis Medical Center with critical burns. She was later transferred to the Grossman Burn Center.
Investigators believe they were trying to steal copper wire from the electrical vault when the explosion occurred.
Two children, ages 3 and 6, were in a truck parked near the victims. They were taken into protective custody until relatives could be located.
Police believe the children were the couple's children.