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July 25, 2014

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Busted pipe spares evidence at Boulder City Police Station

Renovations at the Boulder City Police Station

Worker Joe Teluca clears materials from Boulder City Police Chief Thomas Finn's former office during demolition. The space is being converted into offices for Finn and Deputy Chief John Chase and a conference room. Launch slideshow »

A pipe that burst during renovation of the Boulder City Police Station flooded the evidence room but did not damage any evidence, police say.

The pipe, part of the fire suppression system, broke Aug. 25 in an upstairs area that is being turned into new offices for the police chief, deputy chief and an assistant as well as a conference room, Shane Cunningham of the Public Works Department said. Water flooded the evidence room in the basement below those offices and damaged the current office of Deputy Chief John Chase, which is also in the basement below the work area, Cunningham said.

The water filled the floor of the evidence room to about an inch in depth, Detective Sgt. Vince Albowicz said. Luckily for the department, all of the boxes of evidence were on metal shelving well off the floor, and only a few cardboard boxes sustained damage.

None of the evidence inside the boxes was harmed, Albowicz said.

“The majority of the damage was not to the evidence or the evidence items. It was to the room itself,” he said. “We were very fortunate. No evidence was lost.”

All of the evidence in damaged boxes was repacked into new cardboard boxes, and all of the evidence was moved to a new, larger room, where it will stay, Albowicz said.

As it turns out, he said, the detective bureau had just moved into its new offices upstairs and its old offices in the basement were available.

“It will afford us some growth in the future,” he said.

In the meantime, contractor Hardy Construction Inc. is fixing the damage the broken pipe caused, Cunningham said. All of the walls and drop ceilings are being replaced, and Hardy Construction will pay for the time city employees spent reorganizing the evidence and moving it to its new home.

The good news, Cunningham said, is that Hardy brought in extra workers to handle the repairs, and the remodeling job is still on track to be completed by Sept. 25.

The city plans to host the next Chamber of Commerce mixer at the renovated station at 6 p.m. Oct. 14 to allow the public to see results of the $750,000 project.

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