Attempted theft of catalytic converter interrupted by alert citizen, quick police response
2022-11-18 09:21 PST
File # 2022-173280
Surrey RCMP is advising the public of a recent arrest of a suspect in an attempted theft of a catalytic converter, thanks to the actions of an alert resident and quick response from Frontline officers and Police Dog Services.
On November 13, 2022 at approximately 4:14 a.m., a concerned citizen contacted the Surrey RCMP to report a suspicious person, who was under a vehicle in the 10500-block of 159 Street. Police converged on the area and observed a catalytic converter hanging under the vehicle with the suspect no longer in sight.
Police Dog Services were engaged to assist and tracked the suspect to some nearby bushes where a male was found hiding. He was arrested in possession of some tools commonly linked to these types of thefts from vehicles. The investigation into this incident is ongoing and charges have not yet been laid. Of note, the suspect has a lengthy history of similar auto and property related charges.
The theft of catalytic converters has been of concern in communities across the Lower Mainland, including in Surrey. While overall theft from vehicles has decreased in Surrey according to the latest quarterly statistical report, there have been a significant number of catalytic converter thefts (559 in Q3, July to September 2022).
The makes and models with the highest number of catalytic converter thefts here in Surrey include: Hyundai Tucson, Hyundai Santa Fe, Mitsubishi RVR, Kia Sportage, and Honda CRV.
As these thefts can be done quite quickly, it can be challenging to protect vehicles from these type of thefts. Police suggest parking (when possible) inside garages, secure lots, in well-lit areas, or parking stalls that may be close to entrances/exits with higher volume of vehicle/pedestrian traffic.
Parking with the passenger side door close to a curb or wall that makes access to under the vehicle difficult can be a deterrent. Speak to your mechanic about options for aftermarket anti-theft devices or alarms.
We encourage reporting of suspicious activity, including persons seen loitering in parking lots, or as was in this case, individuals getting underneath vehicles, says Cst. Sarbjit K. Sangha.
Neighbourhood vigilance is key when it comes to helping the police track down prolific property crime thieves.
Cpl. Vanessa MunnMedia Relations Officer
14355 57 Avenue, Surrey, BC, V3X 1A9
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