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Man arrested in Mountain View for catalytic converter theft

A suspect was arrested in Mountain View Aug. 8 after allegedly stealing a catalytic converter, a type of crime that has spiked dramatically across the nation. The car part is made with precious metals that have skyrocketed in value in recent years, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, a nonprofit focused on combating insurance fraud and crime.

Around 10:30 p.m. on Aug. 8, a security officer on the 1000 block of Space Park Way reported a burglary in progress, Mountain View police said. The security guard told police that the suspect was seen running out of an enclosed RV lot and provided a detailed description of the suspect to dispatchers, who relayed the information to responding officers.

"Patrol teams arrived on scene and noted that the suspect had been able to escape the parking lot through a cut fence," police said. "They also noted that several catalytic converters had been taken from uninhabited RVs in the lot. All were subsequently recovered by patrol officers."

Officers began to search the area along the Stevens Creek Trail, which the suspect was last seen running toward.

"With the assistance of a Sunnyvale DPS K9, a backpack belonging to the suspect was found a short distance away," police said.

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The backpack contained burglary tools and a catalytic converter. Officers found the suspect hiding in the creek. He was taken into custody and arrested on suspicion of burglary and possession of burglary tools and booked into the Santa Clara County Jail.

According to a report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau, there were 1,298 catalytic converter thefts reported in 2018. That number jumped to 3,389 reported thefts in 2019 and then 14,433 in 2020, a more than 1,000% increase over that two-year period.

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Malea Martin
Malea Martin covers the city hall beat in Mountain View. Before joining the Mountain View Voice in 2022, she covered local politics and education for New Times San Luis Obispo, a weekly newspaper on the Central Coast of California. Read more >>

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Man arrested in Mountain View for catalytic converter theft

by / Mountain View Voice

Uploaded: Wed, Aug 10, 2022, 1:10 pm

A suspect was arrested in Mountain View Aug. 8 after allegedly stealing a catalytic converter, a type of crime that has spiked dramatically across the nation. The car part is made with precious metals that have skyrocketed in value in recent years, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, a nonprofit focused on combating insurance fraud and crime.

Around 10:30 p.m. on Aug. 8, a security officer on the 1000 block of Space Park Way reported a burglary in progress, Mountain View police said. The security guard told police that the suspect was seen running out of an enclosed RV lot and provided a detailed description of the suspect to dispatchers, who relayed the information to responding officers.

"Patrol teams arrived on scene and noted that the suspect had been able to escape the parking lot through a cut fence," police said. "They also noted that several catalytic converters had been taken from uninhabited RVs in the lot. All were subsequently recovered by patrol officers."

Officers began to search the area along the Stevens Creek Trail, which the suspect was last seen running toward.

"With the assistance of a Sunnyvale DPS K9, a backpack belonging to the suspect was found a short distance away," police said.

The backpack contained burglary tools and a catalytic converter. Officers found the suspect hiding in the creek. He was taken into custody and arrested on suspicion of burglary and possession of burglary tools and booked into the Santa Clara County Jail.

According to a report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau, there were 1,298 catalytic converter thefts reported in 2018. That number jumped to 3,389 reported thefts in 2019 and then 14,433 in 2020, a more than 1,000% increase over that two-year period.

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