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Andersonville On Alert After Catalytic Converter Thieves Target Ashland Ave. And Side Streets

A SUV’s catalytic converter is being removed at a salvage yard. Catalytic converters reduce pollutants by oxidizing carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. Converters contain platinum or palladium which are recovered and recycled during the salvage process. This vehicle, will be crushed, shredded and melted into recycled steel.

A large number of catalytic converter thefts have occurred in Andersonville over the last week as the criminals targeted quiet side streets along N. Ashland and prompted Chicago Police to issue a community alert.

Police issued the alert after at least 8 incidents had taken place over a five day period from July 12 – July 17. One incident happened on N. Ashland while the rest occurred within two blocks of the street between Lawrence and Ridge.

Incident times and locations are as follows:

• 1600 block of W Carmen Ave. on July 12-13, 2019 between 4:00pm – 1:45pm.

• 1400 block of W Hollywood Ave. on July 12-13, 2019 between 6:30pm – 11:00am.

• 4800 block of N Ashland Ave. on July 13, 2019 at 1030am.

• 5000 block of N Paulina St. on July 12-13, 2019 between 4:45pm – 2:00pm.

• 1500 block of W Ardmore Ave. on July 15-16, 2019 between 2:00pm – 8:00am.

• 1600 block of W Olive Ave. on July 15-16, 2019 between 6:30pm – 9:00am.

• 5600 block of N Hermitage Ave. on July 15-16, 2019 between 9:30am – 9:30am.

• 1400 block of W Catalpa Ave. on July 11-17, 2019 between 7:00pm -1030am.

In each of the incidents the catalytic converters were cut from the bottom of parked cars. Thieves have perfected the process of the crime and can sometimes remove the car parts within a minutes or two.

Catalytic converters are used in vehicles to filter harmful exhaust system emissions by turning pollutants into harmless gasses. Thieves target them because they contain precious metals, like platinum, palladium or rhodium, that are valuable to metal dealers.

Police ask residents to report any suspicious cars or activity and alert neighbors to the crimes. They also recommend that owners place security systems on their vehicles. Anyone with information on the thefts should call Area North detectives at 312-744-8263.


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