MODESTO - The Modesto Irrigation District website now includes the names of people caught stealing water from one of the many canals operated by the district. Six names were recently added, most of them residents of the town of Empire.
"The whole idea is to stop water theft. If people serve themselves, by connecting hoses, that takes away from everyone else operating in the right way," District General Manager Roger VanHoy said.
VanHoy said a district employee discovered pipes, pumps and hoses while patrolling on a canal bank. He also said customers have received plenty of notice the district would start enforcing new rules and penalties for water theft.
"If you choose to steal, or have an illegal connection, you'll be posted (online)," VanHoy said.
But one of the people named as a thief isn't happy about that announcement, or even agreeing he was doing anything wrong.