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Woman looks to protect her car after being hit 3 times by catalytic converter thieves

By Joe Vigil

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    LAS VEGAS, Nevada (KVVU) — A woman who lives at an apartment complex near Cheyenne and Pecos said thieves have stolen her catalytic converter three times from the complex. She did not want to be identified and says she believes thieves tried a fourth time over the weekend to get her SUV’s converter, just as she replaced it for a third time.

“Stop stealing from people because it’s awful,” she said.

The woman said she’s had trouble sleeping because she’s worried thieves will strike again and believes it nearly happened a fourth time early Sunday morning. She said a car pulled right next to hers. She walked to her car and shot video, to let the person know she was watching them. She said the car with no license plate and dark tinted windows drove off.

She said she is having a metal catalytic converter plate installed to prevent another theft. But the part isn’t coming in until next week and she is worried her car will be vulnerable until then.

She said she has full insurance coverage and insurance paid for repairs in all three thefts, including car rental while repairs were being made. She said without insurance all three repairs would have cost around $5000.00, not including the rental car. She said she is concerned about all the people without insurance who can’t afford repairs. She said she’s paying around $600.00 for the metal converter plate.

Catalytic converters help clean a vehicle’s exhaust. Some of the metals used in the cleaning process are worth more than gold and it’s why thieves steal them. Some thieves can cut them out in less than a minute and strike anytime anywhere.

Metal plates and catalytic converter cages made from wire are available to help stop thieves. Police urge people to park in a garage if possible or park in well lit areas.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said this year from January 1 to March 15 there have been 585 reported catalytic converter thefts. LVMPD says during the same time last year there were 313 reported thefts.

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