MODESTO (CBS13) — Thieves crushed a grape crop when they took off with the tools that help a local vineyard to grow.
Grape grower Frank Rashid was on track for a record-breaking year.
“See how beautiful?” said Rashid, gesturing toward his grapes.
But in an instant, thieves crippled all of his hard work.
“A lot of trouble for me, [and] the grapes; I can lose the crop, you know,” said Rashid.
Bad guys stole the grape irrigation system worth more than $10,000. And now, his petite syrah grapes are starting to shrivel away.
Rashid says someone walked on to the 14-acre family vineyard over the weekend and went straight for the pair of tanks.
Each tank has a pump.
“And we have here a flush controller,” said Rashid.
A valve and a motor, and that’s not all.
“These parts would hold the filter pressure pump, and they took it out,” said Rashid.
In his 12 years of growing grapes, Rashid has never been hit by thieves. He believes the criminals will cash in his equipment as scrap metal. He plans to install a fence — and even cameras — to protect his crop.
“It’s not just hurting me, it’s hurting the winery, everybody,” said Rashid.
With his livelihood and his business on the line, Rashid hopes to replace the irrigation system by the end of the week. If it’s not installed in time, he fears the crop will be completely destroyed in one week.