Thursday, March 25, 2004

Thieves take kegs, leave dirt behind



By Chris Mayhew
The Cincinnati Enquirer

ERLANGER - Employees of Steinkamp Molding on Turfway Road in Boone County found 24 piles of dirt at the entrance to their building Wednesday morning.

Overnight, someone stole 24 flower planters made from stainless steel 30-gallon beer kegs cut in half. Dirt inside the custom planters was dumped before they were hauled away.

The planters were stolen sometime between 7 p.m. Tuesday and 7 a.m. Wednesday, said Tom Scheben, a spokesman for the Boone County Sheriff's Office.

"We thought it was just distinct," said Bridgitte Reinking, the company's general manager. "You can have flower pots, but this was just different."

The owner, Ingolf Steinkamp, has a brewery in Germany. He had the beer kegs shipped to the U.S. for the opening of the company in 1999 and for other special events, Reinking said.

The kegs, which were polished and cut to display the company's machine-tool skills, generated many compliments from customers and suppliers, Reinking said.

The owner, who loves flowers, had just put seeds into the planters for the start of spring, Reinking said.

Police told the company to check with recycling companies to make sure someone wasn't trying to sell the metal for scrap.

Reinking said the tool-making company, which shares a driveway off Turfway Road with the Point Pleasant Fire Department, specializes in rubber and plastic injection molds, plastic blow molds and foam molds.

"We just want them brought back," Reinking said.

E-mail cmayhew@enquirer.com




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