Catalytic converter thief sends not-so-subtle warning to homeowner

A Gardena woman had a rough start to her day when she tried to start the engine of her car only to find -as so many other Californians have- that her catalytic converter had been stolen while she slept.

The theft occurred on June 4 when, according to a Gardena Police statement, the victim started her Toyota Prius and heard “a loud and unusual noise coming from underneath her vehicle.”

The thieves were captured on her security camera. The video shows one suspect removing the catalytic converter while two others acted as lookouts.

Gardena Catalytic Converter Theft
Gardena Catalytic Converter Theft

In a threat to anyone watching the footage, one of the lookouts was holding what appeared to be a semi-automatic handgun, which he “pointed toward the victim’s home and security cameras,” police said.

After the catalytic converter was removed, the suspects drove off in a dark-colored sedan. Police did not provide descriptions of the suspects.

Anyone with information is asked to call Gardena Police Detective Liliana Pinela at (310) 217-9654.

On May 25, former “General Hospital” actor Johnny Wactor was shot and killed when he and a friend interrupted a crew of thieves who were attempting to remove the catalytic converter from his vehicle in downtown Los Angeles.

Those suspects remain at large.

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