Catalytic converter thieveries become growing issue in South Florida

Catalytic converter crimes are up 300% and can cost around $4,000.

DAVIE, Fla. – There have been several car thefts across Broward County, but the thieveries aren’t of the vehicles but of one specific part inside the cars.

A catalytic converter is a part that the thieves are after and can cost around $4,000, these crimes are up 300% across the country.

A resident in downtown Hollywood posted photos of a man going under a truck and taking the catalytic converter.

In Davie, Karla Schaps called the police when she had the same problem.

She has 2020 black Mitsubishi Outlander and when she woke up to leave for work, she started her car which was missing the catalytic converter, and knew something was wrong.

“It sounded like an explosion. It sounded like the motor is going to blow. I start driving slow, the first thing that comes to my mind...Mitsubishi,” she said.

Ralph Monserati is a service manager at University Mitsubishi in Davie and has discovered this is becoming a growing issue.

“It’s become a local epidemic. We’re getting two or three a day,” Monserati said.

He says it’s the worst this has ever been and even the dealership has become a target.

“They use a portable electric saw and within a minute or two they cut two sides of the pipe and they make off with the catalytic converter,” Monserati said.

Similar videos are being shared all across the country and has experts warning to take action to avoid the frustrations that Karla is dealing with.

“Get a life, get a job! Okay? because I work hard that’s my message,” Schaps said.

To prevent this from happening to you, you can purchase a shield for your catalytic converter to make it harder for it to seal.

You can also paint or mark the part because this will make it harder to sell.

Officers across the country are well aware of this problem and continue to investigate.


About the Author:

Andrew Perez is a South Florida native who joined the Local 10 News team in May 2014.