Over the course of the past two months, three incidents of catalytic converter theft have occurred in Cooper parking garages. This is happening across the country.
Catalytic converters make attractive targets for criminals due to the high scrap value of the precious metals used to make them, and because they are typically easy to remove. Thieves often target minivans, SUVs, and pick-up trucks because they are higher off the ground and easier to slip underneath and cut the catalytic converter pipes. This often takes less than two minutes. If you are in the area while a catalytic converter theft is taking place, you may notice the sound of metal being cut.
The most recent incident at Cooper involved three suspects – two males and a female. Cooper Security captured images of the suspects and their license plate number and provided this information to Camden police. Both male suspects are known to police and are connected to multiple catalytic converter thefts in nearby areas. Police have issued arrest warrants for them.
To deter additional thefts, Cooper has increased security presence in the garages. Signage will also be posted in the garages to warn potential criminals that they are being recorded.
Below are a few tips to help you protect your vehicle from catalytic converter theft:
- Have a mechanic engrave your car’s VIN number on your catalytic converter so it can be more easily identified if stolen, and place a sticker saying that it is marked in your window.
- Have a mechanic install an after-market cage or other theft prevention device on your catalytic converter.
- Check your insurance policy to ensure that you are covered and what your out-of-pocket deductible will be if you are a victim of catalytic converter theft.
While the thefts in Cooper’s garages occurred during weekends, these incidents can happen at any time. If you see or hear anything suspicious, please do not approach the vehicle or attempt to intervene. Immediately report the incident to Cooper Security by calling 856.342.2400.