PALM COAST, FL – Recently, The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) has responded to five calls for service recently where a catalytic converter has been stolen from a vehicle. The job of a catalytic converter is to turn harmful pollutants into safer emissions before it exits through the exhaust.
Parts from a catalytic converter are expensive and are often stolen and re-sold for a profit. Work trucks are commonly targeted as they sit idle for a period of time allowing the thief time to commit the crime.
There have been five catalytic converters reported stolen in Flagler County over the past three months. On November 7, an employee of the Flagler Humane Society reported that the catalytic converter from a work van had been sawed off overnight causing damage to the vehicle. It is estimated that it will cost $2,500 to replace the part and repair the van.
On November 16, the owner of Paradise Landscaping and Nursery reported that the catalytic converter from a work tractor trailer had been cut off overnight causing damage to the vehicle and the exhaust system. It is estimated that it will cost $20,000 to replace the part and repair the vehicle.
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Additional thefts have been reported to the Bunnell Police Department and in Volusia County.
“This is not a Flagler County problem, it is a statewide and a nationwide problem,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “To help prevent these thefts, park your vehicle in the garage if possible or in a well-lit area. It is also beneficial to invest in a vehicle alarm system or have home or business security cameras that cover the area where the vehicle is being parked. Remember, if you see something suspicious say something so a Deputy can respond to investigate.”
Suspects in these cases have not been identified at this time. Anyone with information is asked to call the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office at 386-313-4911 or email TIPS@flaglersheriff.com. To remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-888-277-TIPS (8477). You could be eligible for a reward up to $5,000.00.