By JOSH FRIEDMAN
Less than three months into the year, thieves have stolen a total of 73 catalytic converters from vehicles in San Luis Obispo, according to police.
Six of the 73 catalytic converters thefts since Jan. 1 occurred last week. All six of the catalytic converters stolen last week were taken from Toyota Priuses, police said.
To protect against theft and damage, the police department is instructing residents to park inside a garage. If residents do not have a garage, police suggest people park in well-lit areas and to have a mechanic install anti-theft devices on one’s vehicle.
Additionally, police say now is the time to ramp up the sensitivity of car alarms. Likewise, if anyone hears the sound of a sawzall near parked cars at about 2 a.m., call 911, police said.
Last month, officers caught three thieves from Northern California as they were stealing catalytic converters in San Luis Obispo. Police tracked down the suspects following a tip from a resident who heard what sounded like metal being cut shortly after 1 a.m. in the 100 block of Mustang Drive. The thieves admitted to stealing two catalytic converters each in San Luis Obispo and in Monterey County, according to police.