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Scrap Yard Owner Catches Theft Suspect In Westmoreland Co.

DERRY TOWNSHIP (KDKA) -- A Westmorland County man is facing theft charges after police say he was caught in the act, allegedly stealing from a local scrap yard.

Since 2000, John Siko says his scrap yard in Derry Township has been burglarized some 11 times. In all, he claims he's lost more than $300,000.

So when he saw a strange pickup truck parked at his place, Siko, who was armed, decided to take a look.

"He finally came out around the back side of the building," said Siko.

The suspect, identified as 31-year-old Kenneth Baker of Derry Township, was allegedly carrying an arm full of scrap.

"I said, 'Hey, what are you doing here?'" Siko said.

Baker allegedly yelled some expletives, but then noticed Siko was armed.

"And then he dropped the stuff, and he said, 'Sir, sir, don't shoot me; don't shoot me.' He started crying and he said he has a 7-year-old kid," Siko said. "And I said, 'No, no, don't tell me that.'"

Siko then called 911.

"And I told her I have a thief in the process of stealing and I have him as gunpoint," said Siko.

Troopers arrived and took the still crying Baker into custody and charged him with theft. He would be later released on his own recognizance.

Siko says he was only protecting himself and his assets.

"It's not junk to me, it's how I pay my bills," Siko added.

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