Catalytic Converter Thieves Target Silver Lake for Scrap Metal - NBC Southern California

Catalytic Converter Thieves Target Silver Lake for Scrap Metal

Officials say 35 of the catalytic converter car parts have been reported stolen in two months

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Catalytic Converter Thieves Target Silver Lake Drivers

    Dozens of catalytic converters have been removed from cars over the past few months in the Silver Lake area. Michelle Valles reports for NBC4 News at 5 p.m. from Silver Lake Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. (Published Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014)

    A citywide rise in thefts of catalytic converters for scrap metal is particularly acute in the neighborhood of Silver Lake, according to Los Angeles police.

    In two months, 35 catalytic converters have been reported stolen — one just this Monday, officials said.

    Thieves take only a couple minutes using a portable hand saw to steal the car parts, which can be worth up to $300 due to the high content ratio of palladium, rhodium and platinum, said LAPD Detective Fernando Prieto.

    Silver Lake is a hot spot for the thefts because of a high concentration of targeted cars such as the Honda Element, officials said.

    IE Metal Thieves Target Fire Hydrants

    [LA] IE Metal Thieves Target Fire Hydrants
    From catalytic converters to man-hole covers and aluminum benches, metal theft is not uncommon across the Inland Empire. However, thieves are now targeting something more unusual, and dangerous: fire hydrants. Redlands says theft has rendered 16 of their fire hydrants useless. Craig Fiegener reports from Redlands for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Sept. 17, 2012.
    (Published Monday, Sept. 17, 2012)

    Scrap yards and recycling centers are fueling the growing theft ring by paying top dollar for sawed-off catalytic converters, police said.

    Officials advise people to park in a well-lit area, get a vehicle identification number etched on the catalytic converter and install a motion sensor or "cat clamp" on it.

    The clamps cost between $100 and $700, but replacing a stolen converter can cost up to $3,000.

    Popular cars targeted by converter thieves include the Chevy Cavalier, Pontiac Sunfire and Toyota Sequoia.

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