Pleas for help on social media by an Oakland construction company helped law enforcement track down stolen construction equipment valued at $250,000 this week.

Two excavators stolen from a project on Marsh Creek Road in Clayton last month were found in Byron on Tuesday night, and a 47-year-old Clayton man was arrested in connection with the theft, California Highway Patrol Officer and spokesman John Fransen said.

Police arrested Nicholas Caspar ¿at a property in Byron where the excavators were found, Fransen said. Police are not disclosing the address where they found the excavators because the case remains an active investigation, Fransen said.

Kim Carone, legal counsel for the company McGuire and Hester, said the equipment was virtually intact and in working order. Each excavator costs approximately $125,000, she said.

The company reached out on social and traditional media to publicize the theft and was met with a resounding response, Carone said. One of the tips eventually led to the arrest, Fransen said.

"We followed the tip and with good police work we were able to track the excavators to the property in Byron," he said. "We had a search warrant served about 8:30 p.m. (Tuesday) and we were able to identify the pieces of equipment through their serial numbers."

Fransen said police found "several" other pieces of construction equipment at the residence but that none of it turned out to be stolen.


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Carone said a bucket was missing from one of the excavators but has been replaced. That piece of equipment was back at a construction site on Thursday, she said. The other excavator was missing a rock-wheel. Both of the attachments aid in grinding through hard rock, she said, and though the rock-wheel likely never will be found, it's replaceable, she said.

"It's great news," Carone said. "We're 100 percent company owned. These are expensive pieces of equipment, and when they get stolen, it has hard-hitting implications on our insurance premiums, and the employees really feel it."

Contact Rick Hurd at 925-945-4789 and follow them at Twitter.com/3rdERH.