Increase In Catalytic Converter Thefts

January 26, 2011

Catalytic ConverterThe Mesa Police Department wants to alert the public of a recent increase in catalytic converter thefts over the past three months.

Between Friday, October 22, 2010 and Wednesday, January 12, 2011, the Mesa Police Department has investigated 27 cases involving the theft of catalytic converters. The majority of these incidents take place in parking lots, mostly at shopping centers. The suspects are targeting pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles, because it is easier to get under these vehicles to remove the catalytic converter. At this time, we do not have any suspect information and it is possible that there are multiple suspects.

The catalytic converter is located along the vehicle's exhaust system and is used to reduce vehicle emissions. It takes less than two minutes for a thief to remove the converter from the vehicle. It can cost more than $1,000 to replace a catalytic converter. This is why we are asking the public to take extra precautions to prevent future thefts. Below are several tips that can help in preventing these thefts:

  • Park in areas that are well-lit and easily seen.
  • Park vehicles in garages whenever possible.
  • Back additional vehicles up against garage doors.
  • If possible, park so that someone cannot crawl under the back of your vehicle.
  • Consider having your catalytic converter etched with your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
  • Speak to your mechanic about installing a preventive theft device (cage).


Anyone with information about these thefts is urged to contact the Mesa Police Department at 480-644-2211 or Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.



Mesa Police Department
Media Relations Office

PO Box 1466
Mesa, AZ 85211

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