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Stealing four tons of fertilizer may have seemed like an odd crime once, but not after Oklahoma City, where a fertilizer bomb leveled the Federal Building. That has police taking Sunday's theft in Frederick very seriously.
The theft happened at a Southern States store in Frederick when someone broke into a building out back and stole 8,000 pounds of fertilizer.
"The suspect, we believe, is somewhere between 45 and 50, white male," said Lt. Clark Pennington.
Police know because a surveillance camera captured the suspect just after 5 p.m. Sunday. He might have had help because the fertilizer was packaged in 50-pound bags.
Two types were stolen--2,000 pounds of Urea and 6,000 pounds of 19-19-19. It's the ton of Urea that's raising concern.
It was a fertilizer bomb that killed scores of people at the Federal Building in Oklahoma. That blast used ammonium nitrate, but Urea still presents some threat. According to Frederick Police, shoppers must present identification when they buy it.
Hard economic times opens up more potential uses.
"That's the avenue we're looking at," Pennington said.
Frederick Police are hoping the FBI's lab can exhance the photos enough to reveal a face. Meanwhile, farms and local businesses will be contacted to see if someone might be trying to sell the fertilizer.