Catalytic converter thefts on the rise in Onondaga County


SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office along with other local law enforcement agencies are investigating thefts of catalytic converters in Onondaga County.

According to the Onondaga Sheriff’s Office, deputies along with local law enforcement agencies have responded to an unusually high number of catalytic converter thefts across the county over the past few weeks. 

According to the sheriff’s office Facebook post, thieves have targeted various parts of the county, particularly in the evening hours. 

Catalytic converters contain several types of recyclable materials that can be easily “scrapped” for a quick profit. 

Catalytic converter thieves generally target high profile vehicles like trucks or SUV’s because the higher ground clearance allows for easier access underneath the vehicle. However, sports cars and sedans are not immune to converter theft.

Below are five prevention tips that can reduce your risk of being victim to these thieves:

  • Park in areas where your vehicle will most easily be seen by passers-by. For example, park under lights after dark or near windows at a business. Park near security cameras, if possible.
  • Install street facing security cameras where your vehicle is parked overnight.
  • If your catalytic converter is a “bolt on” model, you can have the bolts welded shut and have extra metal welded to the exhaust system.
  • Install a catalytic converter protection device that will clamp around the converter.
  • Consider engraving your vehicle identification number (VIN) on the catalytic converter-this may help alert a scrap dealer that it was stolen and make it easier to identify the owner.

If your converter is stolen, you’re encouraged to file a police report immediately after the theft is discovered.

Anyone with information about the thefts is asked to call the Sheriff’s Tip Line at 315-435-3051.

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