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Palmdale man arrested on suspicion of rigging truck, siphoning gas

October 19, 2012 |  2:49 pm

>Tank and truck that authorities say suspect Danny Hales used to siphon gas. Credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

A Palmdale man was arrested this week after authorities said he rigged his truck to illegally siphon fuel and allegedly stole a large amount of gas.

Danny Hales, 43, was apprehended after deputies from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Station in Palmdale responded Thursday night to a call that someone was stealing gas from cars in a parking lot in the 400 block of West Palmdale Boulevard. 

When deputies arrived, they found Hales sitting in the cab of his truck and saw pools of gas on the ground nearby, authorities said. 

Due to a rash of gasoline thefts that have occurred in the Antelope Valley over the past year, the officers detained Hales and conducted a theft investigation, Palmdale Sheriff’s Lt. Cory Kennedy said in a statement.

Hales’ truck was “modified with a large, unattached, auxiliary fuel tank in the bed,” Kennedy said.  “It was full of fuel…..there was a hose and some electrical wires which led to the cab.”

Deputies also reported finding an electrical pump with an additional fuel line and some 30 feet of hose attached, Kennedy said. The hose fed back to the tank in the bed of Hales’ vehicle, authorities said.

“The truck appeared to be rigged to illegally siphon fuel from other vehicles and pump it through the cab directly into the extra fuel tank,” Kennedy said.  

Hales was arrested on suspicion of grand theft and tampering with vehicles, Kennedy said.

Authorities in Palmdale say they have investigated numerous reports of theft of fuel, amounting to thousands of dollars. Hales’ arrest marked the first time deputies found a suspect and vehicle equipped to steal fuel, according to Kennedy.

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-- Ann M. Simmons in Santa Clarita

Photo: Tank and truck that authorities say suspect Danny Hales used to siphon gas. Credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. 

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