Catalytic converter theft on the rise

HOLT, Fla., May 19, 2022—The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office has received a number of calls about stolen catalytic converters this week.

In Destin and on Okaloosa Island, two catalytic converters were stolen from vehicles Tuesday and two more were cut from vehicles on Mar Walt Drive in Fort Walton Beach Tuesday.

According to OCSO, thieves seem to be targeting Toyotas and Mitsubishi Outlanders.

Cutting a converter from a vehicle takes less than 1 minute, making them an easy target.

Catalytic converters are prime for theft because of the expensive metals they contain, including palladium, platinum and rhodium. Rhodium is valued at more than $16,000 per ounce. By comparison, gold is valued at $1,800 per ounce.

Recyclers will pay between $50 to $250 for a catalytic converter. Replacement costs are significantly more expensive, ranging to around $3,000 or more.

The sheriff’s office recommends reporting these thefts to 850-651-7400 or leave an anonymous tip by contacting the Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers at 863-TIPS or via the P3 Tips Mobile app.

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