LAPD hosts catalytic converter etching event to combat skyrocketing thefts across city

Having the car's vehicle identification number etched onto the converter makes it easier for officials to prosecute a theft case.
SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The Los Angeles Police Department hosted an event Saturday to combat the skyrocketing number of catalytic converter thefts.

The Newton Community Police Station offered free catalytic converter etching.

The goal of this practice is to deter thieves from stealing the converters in the first place. Having the car's vehicle identification number etched onto the converter makes it easier to prosecute anyone caught.

Christopher Gomez decided to get the etching done after someone stole his neighbor's catalytic converter.

"On the first car they had, they actually stole their catalytic converter," Gomez said. "Then the second catalytic, they got it etched, so it kind of helped preventing. Once they're under, they can see that it's marked, and it'll make them think about it twice."

Thieves are after the precious metals inside catalytic converters worth a high price on the black market.

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LAPD is investigating a spree of brazen catalytic converter thefts that occurred overnight Friday across the San Fernando Valley, and led to one woman being shot.



The etching process only takes a few minutes. Some also get their car windows marked.

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Detectives in Lakewood are investigating three catalytic converter thefts that happened all on the same night, and shocking, newly-released surveillance video shows a group of suspects who residents believe may be involved.



The LAPD is planning more of these events at stations across the city.

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