Mpls police search for catalytic converter thieves

3:19 PM, Dec 19, 2012   |    comments
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MINNEAPOLIS - Minneapolis Police will tell you that fighting crime can be an exhausting business.

In fact, in one recent case, the "exhaust" in exhausting takes on a relatively literal turn.

Investigators are looking for two suspects linked by surveillance photos to the theft of a catalytic converter from an SUV parked in a secure underground garage at an address on Groveland Terrace the morning of November 21. While it may seem like small potatoes, police say the exhaust element cut off the Toyota 4Runner has a value of $2000.

Police spokesman Bill Palmer says there has been a spike in catalytic converter thefts in Minneapolis, although he couldn't say definitively whether the couple captured in the surveillance photos is linked to any of the others.

While it costs big bucks to replace the part, Palmer says it appears that selling them on the black market is not the motive. He believes the converters are being cut off vehicles and then torn apart for the platinum inside, which is then sold to metal recyclers.

Palmer says 4Runners are favorite targets for thieves as they are easy to crawl under and the location of the catalytic converter is easy to access.

If you can identify these suspects or can provide any other information about the case contact Minneapolis Police at 612-673-5588, or email james.spencer@minneapolismn.gov

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