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Police report catalytic converter theft spike in Richmond

Figure for 2020 has already long surpassed total for last year
catalytic
These brand new catalytic converters were recovered from a van belonging to suspected thieves in Surrey. Richmond suffered a spate of such thefts in the summer. Photo submitted

It appears as if the recent theft from a Richmond family’s RV of a catalytic converter is far from an isolated incident.

According to Richmond RCMP, there has been a significant spike this year in such thefts from the underside of vehicles across the city.

Richmond RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Ian Henderson told the Richmond News how, as of this month, the number of catalytic converter thefts for 2020 has already swept past the total for 2019.

According to their statistics, 115 units have been stolen, compared to just 82 for all of last year.

Henderson noted that the increase – which is indicative of similar thefts across the Lower Mainland – could be partially “attributed to an increase in precious metals prices” this year.

He added that the RCMP’s  Strike Force Unit has been investigating the spike and is “liaising with other investigators” across the Lower Mainland.

Henderson described the recent arrests made in Surrey in connection with a number of such thefts across the Lower Mainland as a “positive step.”

The News reported last week how a Richmond family’s long-awaited camping trip had to be shelved when they realized – after being packed up and ready to go – that someone had stolen the catalytic converter from their RV.

Below is a breakdown of the reports made to Richmond RCMP, by month, over the last two years. (note, the number of reports and actual thefts may differ as some reports involved multiple items stolen)

2020:

Stolen: 115

Reports:

Jan         4

Feb        17

Mar        22

Apr         12

May       3

Jun         11

Jul           14

Aug        10

Total: 93

 

2019:

Stolen: 82

 

Reports:

Jan         1

Feb        4

Mar        2

May       8

Jun         11

Jul           16

Aug        7

Sep        2

Nov        8

Dec        15

Total:     74