By Mike Mosedale
Monday, April 14, 2008
Kwan Manasseh is a hard-luck character with a long rap sheet. He's now in jail for committing a crime that's on the rise in Minneapolis' North Side and elsewhere: copper theft. More and more, thieves are preying on vacant houses and buildings, stripping the structures of copper and other valuable metals, often to pay for meth, crack and booze habits. And as the number of these thieves mounts, the criminal-justice system is struggling to deal with them.