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Press Contact: A. McDougall, Acting PIO, (510) 981-5773

REPEAT OFFENDER ARRESTED FOR ATTEMPTED CATALYTIC CONVERTER THEFT

Berkeley, California (Wednesday, March 24, 2021) - On February 26th 2021 at around 3:44 a.m., Berkeley PD received a report of two people attempting to steal a catalytic converter from a Toyota Prius parked in a driveway on Creston Road.  The victim interrupted the suspects, who jumped into an idling car driven by a third person and fled, leaving the victim vehicle up on jacks.  Responding officers stopped a car driving away from the scene on Creston Road.  During the detention, officers saw a reciprocating saw in plain view in the car, and also located jack handles in the car.  The driver, a 39-year-old man with no address given, and the passengers, a 36-year-old man with no address given and a 36-year-old Richmond man, were arrested for PC 487/667 – Attempted grand theft, PC 466 – Possession of burglary tools, and PC 182(a)(1) – Conspiracy to commit a crime.

On March 19th 2021 around 12:04 am, Berkeley PD received a report of two people attempting to steal a catalytic converter from a vehicle parked on the street near Shattuck Avenue and Ashby Avenue.  Officers responded and found two men seated in a parked car directly across the street from the victim vehicle.  As they neared the suspect car they heard a police radio scanner coming from inside the car.  They also observed a floor jack and a reciprocating saw in plain view inside the suspect car.  A subsequent search of the vehicle found tools commonly used to steal catalytic converters, including two reciprocating saws, vehicle jacks, a cordless drill, 10 reciprocating saw blades, and a battery and charger (see included photo). The suspects were also found to be in possession of around one-half ounce of methamphetamine.  One of the suspects was determined to be the 39-year-old man arrested in the Creston Road incident.  Both he and the other suspect, a 44-year-old Oakland man, were arrested for for PC 487/667 – Attempted grand theft, HS 11378 – Possession of methamphetamine for sale, HS 11364 – Possession of drug paraphernalia, and PC 182(a)(1) – Conspiracy to commit a crime.  Patrol officers later obtained a search warrant to search one suspect’s cell phone. The search of the phone revealed further evidence of theft and narcotic sales. 

BPD is aware that theft of catalytic converters is an ongoing crime trend affecting Berkeley and many other communities across the country.  We commend the diligent and professional efforts of our patrol officers that resulted in the above arrests.

 Cat theft evidence

Case 2021-00008306

Case 2021-00011846

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