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Battle Creek police offer tips to avoid catalytic converter thefts

Catalytic Converter Thefts
Posted at 9:56 AM, Nov 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-22 09:56:27-05

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — Battle Creek police say they’ve noticed a recent increase in thefts of catalytic converters from cars across the community and want to share helpful tips and things to look for.

Police have been doing extra patrols in targeted areas, including near car dealerships, car repair shops and areas where areas are generally stored, according to a news release Monday.

The BCPD Fusion Center is tracking local trends and patterns in these thefts and is working with other law enforcement agencies to develop suspect profiles.

People commonly use battery-powered reciprocating saws and battery-powered grinders to cut off catalytic converters. If you see someone walking at odd hours with these tools, call 911 to have officers look into it.

These tools make a lot of noise and sometimes create sparks. If you hear someone sawing or grinding on metal during the night and it’s not a familiar sound where you live, call 911.

If you see people checking cards or getting under cars in your neighborhood and it seems suspicious, call 911.

Catalytic converters look similar to a muffler. If you see someone walking in your neighborhood with one of these “for no apparent reason,” call 911.

Thieves target hybrid vehicles more often because their catalytic converters contain more rare metals and are worth more money when sold, police said.

Thieves also target trucks and SUVs more often because they are easier to get under.

Battle Creek police offered the following tips to help prevent these thefts:

  • At night, park your car in your driveway or in your garage with the door shut. Do not park on the street if possible. 
  • Make your driveway well-lit. Consider using security cameras, doorbell cameras and motion cameras to help deter would-be thieves. 
  • When in public, park your car near a building entrance or an access road. These areas have more traffic and visibility. 
  • Avoid parking in a large, deserted area overnight when possible, like park-and-rides or closed businesses. 
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