Crime and Courts

Montgomery County Offers Free Catalytic Converter Etching to Combat Thefts

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The Montgomery County Police Department has launched a new effort to curb catalytic converter thefts, which have skyrocketed in recent years.

The department is partnering with local auto dealerships and mechanics to offer catalytic converter etchings and paintings.

Catalytic converters will be labeled with a serialized ID number. That serial number is stored in a database to help track it if it's stolen.

"Operation: Etch and Catch" launched over the weekend.

To sign up, contact your local police district.

Montgomery County reports more than 700 car parts have been stolen so far this year. Toyota Prius and Honda CR-Vs are at the highest risk of catalytic converter thefts, police said.

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The catalytic converter is the part that removes some of the toxic emissions from the car’s exhaust through a chemical process. Thieves are after the valuable precious metals inside the car part.

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