Police are warning vehicle owners to be vigilant after a series of catalytic converter thefts have taken place in the Moorlands. The warning has been sent out by Staffordshire Police after three incidents of such thefts in Cheadle and Cheddleton.
Police are warning vehicle owners to be vigilant after a series of catalytic converter thefts have taken place in the Moorlands.
The warning has been sent out by Staffordshire Police after three incidents of such thefts in Cheadle and Cheddleton.
A spokesman for the force said: “Police were called a total of three times on Wednesday (August 25) to incidents of vehicle crime.
“Officers were first called at midnight to an address on Thorley Drive in Cheadle where a catalytic converter had been stolen from a Toyota Auris.
“CCTV footage showed offenders travelling in a silver Seat, with two offenders getting out of the car to make the theft, while a further offender remained in the car, before departing in the direction of Cedar Grove.
“The resident was able to obtain a number plate, a partial of which is AV11 – which officers believe is cloned.
“Another converter was stolen about 20 minutes later, from a Toyota Celica on Wall Lane Terrace, Cheddleton.
“CCTV footage from the area shows a small silver car arrive from the direction of the Ashcombe Centre at 12.22am.
“Two offenders get out while the vehicle is driven up the street and turned around.
“Meanwhile, the two offenders remove the converter, before departing in the direction of the Ashcombe Centre.
“A third converter is stolen from a Toyota Auris along the same street, between 8.45pm and 8am on Thursday (August 26), though it is believed this happened shortly after the first incident at around midnight on 25 August.
“Officers are currently reviewing CCTV footage of the scene.”
These three incidents came after two further similar thefts were also reported on August 25 involving Honda vehicles.
The police spokesman said: “At around 7pm, an offender gained entry to George Rhodes Garage, Tunstall Road, Knypersley, in Biddulph.
“CCTV footage shows the offender then removes the converter from a silver Honda Jazz before leaving the scene.
“A further converter was then reported stolen from a Honda parked in a layby on Moss Lane, Stockton Brook, between 8.30am and 8.30pm the same day.”
To reduce the risk of having your vehicle’s catalytic converter stolen, Staffordshire Police are urging vehicle owners to: Park your car in a locked garage or a well-lit and well-populated area, covered by CCTV; If parking in a public car park, park alongside other cars and with your bonnet towards the wall; Avoid parking your vehicle half on the pavement and half on the road; If there is a fleet of vehicles, park the low clearance vehicles to block the high clearance vehicles; For thefts occurring on driveways, consider the use of a driveway alarm and sensor; If your catalytic converter is bolted on, ask for your local garage to weld the bolts or ask a trained mechanic mark it; You can purchase a ‘cage clamp’ to make it more difficult to remove; Install a Thatcham-approved alarm and tilt sensor that will activate should any thief try to jack the vehicle up to steal the converter; If you see someone acting suspiciously under a vehicle, report it to Staffordshire Police.
Chief Inspector David Wain, Staffordshire Police’s senior investigating officer for this type of crime, added: “We ask that vehicle owners look out for this type of activity and record descriptions – noting down anything that could be useful to us.
“Try to obtain any key information such as registration numbers of vehicles carrying offenders and makes and models in case the plates have been changed.
“We would urge anybody who witnesses an incident taking place to call 999 immediately.”
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