Police in Normal have arrested three people who have allegedly been stealing thousands of gallons of gasoline from area service stations since November. Assistant Chief Eric Klingele says it took a while to discover the thefts.
"Generally they were able to manipulate the functioning of the pump to pump gas without it registering. It wasn't readily known by the employees of the gas station that gas was being pumped."
Klingele says gas stations in Normal, Bloomington, Towanda, and Carlock reported problems dating back to November.
"Well I think when they did their inventory fill in their tanks they realized they were missing a lot of gas."
Klingele says he doesn't want to say exactly how the three were allegedly gaming the machines, but that it is a mechanical rather than electronic scam. 33-year old Annie Rials, 33 year old Marvin Turner, and 42 year old Cayce Rivers are all accused of theft between $10,000 and $100,000. Rials and Turner also allegedly had burglary tools. He says it's possible the arrests will prompt more reports from other outlets.
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