THEFTS of catalytic converters from cars are on the rise in Rugby.
Police in the town are stepping up patrols and issuing security advice after revealing 24 catalytic converters were stolen from vehicles in Rugby from June 1 to July 22 – which they described as a ‘small increase’.
In just 60 seconds, would-be thieves can jack up cars and steal catalytic converters – box-like devices fitted to car exhausts to reduce harmful emissions, which are targeted by criminals because some contain precious metals.
And police are warning the public that many of these thefts happen in the car parks of businesses.
Safer Neighbourhoods Ch Insp Karen Jones said: “Residents are often good at making sure they do what they can to minimise the chance of these thefts happening at home.
“But they may let their guard down when it comes to parking outside a pub, hotel or shop – making it easier for would be thieves to target their vehicles.
“We’ve already identified the problem areas and we’ve stepped up patrols – with our officers providing a visible presence and engaging with the public.
“Our officers are also engaging with Rugby businesses to check their security procedures and to give advice on how to help us to prevent thefts.”
Traffic officers from Operational Patrol Unit (OPU) Warwickshire continue to target catalytic converter thieves.
Insp Jem Mountford, who leads the OPU team, said: “We have had a lot of success over the last 12 months – on some occasions stopping cars with boots full of catalytic converters.
“There have been incidents where witnesses have called in a theft in progress, giving us the opportunity to respond quickly and hopefully catch the offenders.”
Visit https://tinyurl.com/yc25v7av for police advice about how to make it harder for thieves to steal catalytic converters.
Visit https://tinyurl.com/34eet55c to report suspicious behaviour, or call 999 to report a crime in progress.