OK, Far North Siders, it’s your turn to be warned about our city’s ubiquitous catalytic converter thieves. The newly-released community alert from Chicago police follows recent similar alerts for Lakeview and the Northwest Side, Lincoln Park, and Old Town.
In fact, thieves were seen sawing parts off cars in Lincoln Park again around 6 a.m. Tuesday. A witness said two men were under a white convertible with a saw on the 2400 block of North Cannon around 6 a.m. No arrests were made. Just ten days ago, CWB shared video of a thief sawing a catalytic converter off a car on Broadway near Belmont as the sun rose. Other thefts were reported nearby the same morning.
According to the new alert from Area Three detectives, police said a theft crew is targeting Toyota Prius and pick-up trucks during overnight hours in Rogers Park, Edgewater, and West Ridge. In one case, a witness saw four men working together to steal the valuable car parts while driving in a Jeep and a sedan, the alert said.
An automotive website reported earlier this year that Toyota Prius is “particularly attractive” to thieves because the cars run cleaner than most vehicles, so the precious metals in their converters are less depleted than standard cars. Pick-up trucks and SUVs have long been popular targets because they are easier for thieves to crawl under.
Police publicly linked six thefts during April to the crew, but more cases are likely involved. CPD said they struck in Edgewater on the 5200 block of North Kenmore between April 6 and 8 and the 1100 block of West Balmoral around 5:30 a.m. on April 28.
In Rogers Park, police said thefts occurred in the 7500 block of North Kenmore at 11:30 p.m. on April 9; the 1600 block of West Wallen between April 12 and 17; and the 7500 block of North Western around 6 a.m. on April 30.
One case occurred in West Ridge on the 7400 block of North Washtenaw between April 7 and April 9, according to the alert.
Anyone with information about the crimes can contact Area Three detectives at 312-744-8263 regarding community alert P21-3-062.