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Police report catalytic-converter thefts rising in city of Ventura

Crime Analysis Unit map depicts all catalytic converter thefts from January to August 14, 2012. The blue boxes on the map depict all incidents since January and the blue boxes with yellow triangles depict incidents since July 1.

August 16, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
The Ventura Police Department issued a public warning Thursday for city residents to be aware of an increase in thefts of catalytic converters from vehicles since July 1.

Police said seven were reported stolen in July and six in August to date. The types of vehicles targeted were all Toyotas.

Since July 1, five Toyota pickup trucks, five 4-Runners, and three unknown Toyota models all had their catalytic converters stolen. From January to June 30, 2012 pickup trucks were targeted twice, 4-Runners three times, and unknown Toyota models twice.

Some suspect/vehicle info was reported in some of the incidents. A 1980s-90s silver Ford Explorer with gray bumper; a possible white newer model truck with a heavyset Hispanic female in it; and a silver Ford Mustang with tinted windows were seen in the area before some of the respective thefts.

Ventura Police offered tips to help prevent thefts:

- Be vigilant and to please immediately report any and all suspicious activity to us at 805-650-8010 (24 hr. non-emergency number) or 911 in the event of an emergency.

- Set your alarm if you have one.

- Good lighting is often one of the best deterrents to burglary. Whenever possible try to park in a well lit area and if possible install lighting/motion lights where you tend to park your vehicle.

- If possible, park your car in your garage.

- Talk to your family, friends, and neighbors and get involved in a Neighborhood Watch program. In an effort to facilitate a virtual Neighborhood Watch program and help foster neighbor-to-neighbor communications, our department has partnered with Nextdoor.com, a private social network for neighborhoods.

Police offered some helpful sites for more information on catalytic-converter theft:

Pro Vigil Catalytic Converter Theft + 9 Ways to Stop Catalytic Converter Thieves

Edmunds.com Catalytic Converter Theft