In response to a rash of catalytic converter thefts in south Placer County, the Rocklin Police Department, in cooperation with local businesses and organizations, has scheduled a free catalytic converter etching event Feb. 11.
In the first three weeks of this year, Rocklin police received 29 reports of catalytic converter thefts. Although some arrests have been made, such thefts continue to occur, according to a Police Department news release.
Catalytic converters, along with copper and other metals, have become a hot commodity among thieves. The catalytic converters are targeted because of their value, the relative ease of stealing them and their lack of identifying markings, police said. The lack of identification makes it difficult to identify victims and to successfully apprehend and prosecute criminals.
The most common vehicles targeted by catalytic converter thieves are Toyota trucks and SUVs, particularly 4 Runners, because of their high ground clearance, police said. But the thefts are not limited to Toyotas.
In an effort to deal with the identification issue, a free etching event is scheduled where vehicle license plate numbers will be etched onto the catalytic converters. License plate numbers can provide police with the information they need to identify victims and prosecute criminals.
The event is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 11 at Les Schwab Tires, 5610 Pacific St., Rocklin. Vehicle owners wishing to have their catalytic converter etched should call the Police Department's "Etch and Catch" hotline at (916) 625-5418 to schedule an appointment. Callers must provide their name, contact telephone number, make and model of their vehicle, and city of residence. The event is open to residents throughout the area.
Only 80 appointments are available, so people are advised to make reservations soon. Drive-up participants may be accepted if space and time allow. The event may be canceled and rescheduled in case of rain.
For more information, call Michael Nottoli at (916) 625-5416.
In addition to Les Schwab Tires, event sponsors include Lowe's, Superfast Signs, Big Daddy's Pizza Co., Starbucks Coffee, Kona Coffee, Wave Broadband, Minuteman Press, Rocklin Police and Fire Volunteers, the Sierra College Auto Club and the Rocklin Chamber of Commerce.