Authorities warn about theft of catalytic converters

Not only do crooks steal cars and any belongings left inside, but they are also targeting a part inside of the vehicle.

The Charlotte County Sheriff’s alerted the public of an uptick in thefts of catalytic converters. Catalytic converters are part of the vehicle’s exhaust system and with the right tools can be removed quickly.

Criminals want the precious metals — platinum, palladium and rhodium — inside of the converters.

“The thieves are looking for the precious metals that are inside the catalytic converters, its very valuable to them and they can sell if for quite a bit of money,” said Claudette Bennett, public information officer with the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office.

There are a few steps you can take to protect you car. You can avoid dark parking lots, install security cameras and motion-activated lighting. You can also use a car alarm if it’s installed. Also, report any suspicious activity.

In addition to theft of catalytic converters, car break-ins are also increasing across the state and country. Law enforcement encourages people to lock their cars.

RESOURCES:

The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office warns the public of an increase in catalytic converter thefts. Watch it here.

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Reporter:Rich Kolko
Writer:Melissa Montoya
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