DETROIT (WJBK) - Two men were found dead inside a public lighting substation in Detroit after police say they came into contact with 24,000 volts of electricity while trying to steal copper wire.
"It's very gruesome - very, very gruesome," Detroit Police Department Capt. Kyra Joy Hope said.
It happened Friday morning at the Detroit public lighting substation in the 6600 block of Raymond on Detroit's east side.
"Suspects trying to attempt to steal copper from the location, touched the transformer which knocked it out and subsequently to their demise," Hope said.
Investigators say the suspects broke into the substation through a back door.
"I never really caught anyone doing it or seen anyone doing it but I know they do it," said a neighbor, Robert Sturdivant.
Not only were they killed instantly when they came in contact with the transformer, their bodies were badly burned. The medical examiner’s office is working to identity them.
Hope says this is a tragedy that could have been avoided.
"If you're down, out on your luck in any kind of way, reach out to your neighborhood police officers. We have neighborhood police officers who have a resource of information for people, jobs available. We have social workers inside of our precincts now," Hope said.