Valley Drought 2014: Thieves Steal 2,500 Gallons Of Water - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Valley Drought 2014: Thieves Steal 2,500 Gallons Of Water

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MADERA RANCHOS, CA -

Valley Drought 2014 has gotten so bad that the Madera County Sheriff's department say thieves are stealing water.

A water tank in the backyard of a Madera Ranchos home holds 2,500 gallons of water. The homeowner says it was recently filled this week, but on Friday he realized that the tank was empty.

"There's absolutely no water, they took absolutely every drop of it," says the water tank owner Brian Wachter.

Brian Wachter and his daughter Courtney say they're sick of having their water ripped off. They say over the past three months someone has stolen their water eight times.

"It's horrible," says Courtney Wachter, "We go without showering, we can't flush our toilets, and we can't wash our hands when they get dirty."

The Wachters say the thieves drive up to their backyard, kick in their fence and steal the water.

"Please stop," adds Brian Wachter, "If you can't afford water come to me and say, "Hey, can I have some water? Can I have 100 gallons or 200 gallons?" "I'll say fine."

To have the tank refilled Wachter says it costs $275.

"I can't even keep water in my swimming pool," says Brian Wachter, "I can't afford it. At $275 a truck load how can people be so insensitive to break in and steal the water?"

The family is working with Madera County Sheriff's deputies and Courtney Wachter put a sign on the tank warning the thieves to stay away.

"Don't come steal my water, bust my fence, and feel that anything I have is yours," says Brian Wachter, "It's wrong."

The family says they are going to install several surveillance cameras. They hope the cameras will scare the thieves away or if they come back, they'll catch them on camera.

If you have any information about the water thieves call the Madera County Sheriff's Department at 559–675–7770.

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