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Pieces of Hoberman Arch stolen

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Posted at 9:51 PM, Dec 08, 2014
and last updated 2014-12-09 00:01:34-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- Parts of the historic architectural cornerstone of the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics have vanished.

Thieves stole metal beams that are part of the Hoberman Arch.

"It was absolutely iconic. It was so unique for the Olympics. Anyone who saw the Hoberman Arch knew that it was associated with the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake," said Rocky Anderson, who was the mayor at the time of the Winter Olympics.

The iconic masterpiece was dismantled, moved from the University of Utah and put in a highly secured storage place a few months ago until the City could decide on its new home.

"It's our understanding we lost at least several pieces of the Hoberman Arch," said Art Raymond, Deputy Director of Communications for Salt Lake City.

On Sunday around 1:30 p.m., a bandit managed to get past the barbwire fence at a impound lot near 2300 West and 500 South in Salt Lake City.

"A witness saw a white truck pull up and actually pulled around the back, and they could see he was loading in," said Sgt. Robin Heiden, spokeswoman for Salt Lake City Police Department.

Up to eight pieces of the Hoberman Arch are now missing and police don't have much to go on.

Anderson is appalled.

"You have a grand opportunity and it ends in the impound lot, with no plan and now it's being destroyed," the former mayor told FOX 13 Monday.

City officials say it spent $100,000 to move the Hoberman and had plans to discuss where its permanent home would be. Now they're scrambling to figure out which pieces are gone and if they can be replaced.

They've hired an engineer to help.

"He's going to be doing an inventory so we can identify exactly what's missing and do whatever we can to recover the pieces," Raymond said.

The Olympic Legacy Foundation released a statement saying in part, they've been assured the City will replace the missing pieces.

"It's really clear I think to everybody in this community and around the state that Salt Lake City doesn't have the Olympic legacy places that it should have,"  Anderson said.

Police are looking for a white truck but don't have license plate information yet.

The suspect is described as a white male in his 30's. He was wearing a plaid shirt and black beanie cap.

A white female wearing a red sweatshirt was his getaway driver. Anyone with information is asked to call 801-799-3000.