Officers with the Simi Valley Police Department arrested two men after they were found to be in possession of a stolen catalytic converter early Saturday morning.
According to a SVPD release, police were dispatched to a Mobil gas station on reports of a catalytic converter theft in progress at 3:52 a.m. Saturday morning. The exact location of the gas station was not released by authorities.
Upon arriving on scene, responding officers located the suspects’ vehicle – a white Kia – and detained the two occupants.
“Further investigation revealed a stolen sawed-off catalytic converter in the vehicle, along with a floor jack and a reciprocating saw,” Simi Valley police said.
The suspects were identified as two 29-year-old men from Los Angeles County: Edwin Nava of South Gate and Louis Rodriguez of Inglewood.
Both were booked at the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office Pre-Trial Detention Facility.
Nava was charged with grand theft, conspiracy to commit grand theft and identity theft.
Rodriguez was charged with grand theft, conspiracy to commit grand theft, possession of controlled substances and operating a vehicle with a suspended driver’s license.
The Simi Valley Police Department has released a list of prevention tips against catalytic converter thefts:
- Report any suspicious subjects or any out of the ordinary sounds to police
- Park vehicles in the driveway with the rear doors closest to your residence
- Leave exterior residential lights on throughout the night or install motion detecting lights
- If parking on the street, choose a well-lit area
- Trim back and trees and/or bushes that may obscure your vehicle from view
- Have a specialist etch the vehicle’s license plate numbers or VIN onto the catalytic converter
- Always remove keys, roll up windows and lock the car