Vandalism targeting Suddenlink fiber optic cables left about 10,000 customers without service last Wednesday and into Friday.
That left many residents and businesses without internet access, a working phone or television service for up to 48 hours in McKinleyville, Trinidad, Big Lagoon, Fieldbrook, parts of Arcata, and Manila.
Service went out at about 11 p.m. on Wednesday, March 13. Someone broke into an underground vault on Old Arcata Road, cut pieces of fiber optic line and threw them away.
Those who were particularly hit hard by the outage were residents and businesses with Suddenlink’s bundled services, in which you get phone, internet and television in a single package.
According to Suddenlink, service was restored to all customers by Friday night.
The cutting of the cable line Wednesday night was the fourth vandalism attack on Suddenlink since March 8. On that night, someone cut a line in Ferndale at about midnight, then cut another one in Trinidad at about 2 a.m.
Then, on March 11, another line was cut in Ferndale, leaving residents in Rio Dell and Scotia without service.
Suddenlink estimate the cost of repairing each cutting at about $10,000.
Suddenlink is offering a $5,000 cash reward for the arrest and conviction of the suspect(s) that are responsible for these crimes.
This is an on-going investigation and the Sheriff’s Office is working diligently to identify a suspect or suspects in these crimes and to stop further vandalisms and interruptions to Suddenlink’s services.
Anyone with information for the Sheriff’s Office regarding this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call Detective Kirkpatrick of the Sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Division at (707) 268-3640 or the Sheriff’s Tip Line at (707) 268-2539.