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Man arrested in cable-equipment thefts

An investigation is underway centered on the home of a McDonough businessman where authorities said they found more than $1 million in stolen cable equipment.

Dallas Woodroe Goddin, 31, has been charged with theft by receiving.

Henry County Police executed a search warrant Monday at Goddin's home, at 15 Oak Grove Lane, around 10 a.m., according to Police Capt. Jason Bolton. Goddin has been identified by police as owner of Communications Industry Services, Inc., which bears the same address as his home.

"At this time, well over a million dollars in stolen cable equipment has been discovered at the residence," said Bolton. "Known victims at this time include Comcast Cable, Charter Communications, and Georgia Power."

Bolton said undercover officers in the Henry County Police Department's narcotics unit, were in the process of purchasing the allegedly stolen items from Goddin when the warrants were executed.

"Whether or not he was doing the stealing, or he was buying it and then selling it, I'm not exactly sure, but they're going to figure all that out in talking with him," Bolton said.

The police department became aware of Goddin's alleged activities as a result of an investigation by Comcast. "Comcast pulled surveillance on this individual," said Bolton. "They actually made two purchases of stolen equipment from this individual. Comcast then contacted the police department, and we got involved at that time. Detectives believe that he was selling this equipment — that he was possibly buying and selling it, or acquiring it somehow," he added.

Bolton said police hope to discover whether Goddin was working alone, or, if he was conspiring with someone else to commit the thefts.

Cindy Kicklighter, manager of communications for Comcast's Atlanta region, confirmed the company's investigation of Goddin, and that the company is cooperating with Henry Police. She would not comment on the specifics of Comcast's investigation, but said the stolen items include fiber, nodes, amplifiers and power supplies.

"The [stolen] equipment allows Comcast to transmit the signal from our head-end facilities into our customers' homes and businesses," said Kicklighter. "Theft of cable-line gear has a major impact on the quality of services that Comcast delivers to its customers."

Trey Crosby, technical operations manager for Charter Communications, was called to Goddin's home Monday by police as part of the investigation. He said he and his co-workers located some of his company's cable equipment, and are examining serial numbers of other devices to determine who owns them.

Crosby said Goddin does not appear to have had a direct connection to Charter, prior to the alleged thefts. Crosby, who has been working in the cable field for more than 19 years, said Goddin's case is a first for him.

Jason Tutterow, an investigator with corporate security for Georgia Power, also joined police and workers from cable companies during the search for stolen equipment at Goddin's home.

Tutterow said he found three spools of wire belonging to his company Monday, and is trying to determine how the suspect gained access to it.

Goddin was jailed Monday, and is expected to appear in Magistrate Court today.