Photo Credit: Kevin Schlot/Flickr
Dozens of pieces of music equipment were stolen from the 40 Watt Club during a break-in this morning, according to Athens-Clarke County police.
The burglary happened sometime between the legendary downtown music venue's closing at 2:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., police said. Owner Barrie Buck reported it to police earlier today.
Officers noted damage around the the rear door and called in a forensic unit to collect evidence, said Sgt. Epifiano Rodriguez, ACCPD's public information officer.
Seven amplifiers, eight direct boxes and 37 microphones were stolen, Rodriguez said. The burglars also tried to take several other amps but couldn't for unknown reasons, he said.
Many of the items are engraved with "40 Watt," he said.
Epifiano said tonight that he is not aware of any suspects.
Check back to flagpole.com for updates.
UPDATE: R.E.M.'s Mike Mills and Cracker's David Lowery say they are offering a combined $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the thief (or thieves):
Here is the list of missing equipment, according to 40 Watt staff:
Power Amps:Peavey GPS 3500 – subs (<80Hz)2 Crest 8001 – subs (< 80Hz)Crown MT 1200 – low midrange (80Hz – 150Hz)3 Crown MT 1200 – high midrange (150Hz – 1.6kHz)Mics:1 Shure Beta 521 Shure Beta 914 Shure Beta 584 Shure Beta 576 Shure SM 588 Shure SM 572 Shure SM811 Shure PG811 Electro Voice RE 201 AKG D1121 Electro Voice 408A1 Audio Technica ATM253 Sennheiser 6043 Audix OM 5DI's:2 Radial JDI4 Radial Pro DI2 Whirlwind Director2 Rapco DB-100
UPDATE: ACC police announced on their Facebook page early Wednesday that a suspect in the case has been identified and arrested, and the stolen equipment was recovered.
The Banner-Herald identifies the suspect as 36-year-old Michael Simpson Wilson. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a pawn-shop owner in Greenville, SC, recognized the equipment from media reports when Wilson tried to sell it to him. He contacted ACCPD, which reviewed security footage with club owner Buck, who identified Wilson as a former contractor for the 40 Watt.
As was reported earlier this week, ACCPD officer Nathaniel Franco's incident report of the burglary noted the possibility that it was an inside job: "I think it is also possible that someone with a key entered and committed this burglary and ‘staged’ the damage to the back door to make it look like forced entry was made," read the report.