New Castle County Police report spike in catalytic converter thefts.


The New Castle County Division of Police is reporting a spike in catalytic converter thefts.

Since January, the division has reported about 175 thefts in New Castle County alone. Skilled thieves can remove the devices within minutes.

The value of rare metals used in the emissions device has skyrocketed leading to the increase in thefts.

Thieves target the platinum, palladium, or rhodium. In recent years, however, the values of these precious metals have skyrocketed.

County Police suggest the following to decrease chances of thefts:


-Park in a garage if possible.

  • Look for cameras: Choose parking garages and parking lots covered by cameras

-Park in a well-lit area

  • Consider installing a dash camera. Some dash cams use motion sensors and will record anyone close enough to your car to get to the catalytic converter. The presence of a camera can be enough to scare thieves off.
  • Install an anti-theft device. Some car shops offer shields designed to make a catalytic converter harder to remove. No studies have pointed to their effectiveness, although officers say the devices might lead would-be thieves to move on.