Copper thieves leave Lakeside Little League’s fall season in jeopardy

LAKESIDE, Calif. -- Lakeside National Little League is scrambling after copper thieves hit the fields where they play.

The thieves stripped the electrical boxes, leaving only 3 out of the 4 baseball fields with working facilities. No scoreboards and no lights means no games -- and it’s going to cost thousands of dollars to fix.

“Thieves have been stealing all of the copper out of our conduit here, so it’s making our field lights not operable,” said Lakeside National Little League Vice President Brandy Phillips. “So then we cannot play on these fields at night if we’re not able to light them up.”

Phillips says the field has been hit by thieves three times, leaving the fall ball season in jeopardy.

"You have to have the lights to be able to see the ball and the players and the plays that they’re making,” Phillips told FOX 5.

The County of San Diego leases the facility to the league, leaving the non-profit organization financially responsible for all necessary repairs. "So we’re looking at anywhere between five and ten grand to fix it,” said Phillips.

Without that kind of cash on hand, the league set up a GoFundMe page in hopes of raising enough money to make the repairs, to make sure the kids can play ball this upcoming season. "100-percent about the youth around Lakeside and around the East County that play here," said Phillips of the fundraiser.

The good news: San Diego County Sheriff’s investigators arrested two people Wednesday morning who they believe are not only responsible for the wire thefts in Lakeside, but at two other locations in Santee over the last few days.

If you'd like to help the Lakeside National Little League go to their GoFundMe page here.