The Wallkill Police Department has had its hands full as of late dealing with a large increase in the number of thefts that have occurred recently. Specifically, a surprising increase in auto part thefts has forced the town of Wallkill and its Police Department to issue a warning to residents.

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Catalytic Converter Thefts on the Rise

The recent announcement from the Wallkill Police Department came in reference to the rising number of people who have had their vehicle's catalytic converters stolen. For those unaware, a catalytic converter is part of a vehicle's exhaust system. The catalytic converter breaks down the emissions that come from car exhaust and essentially filters them making the exhaust less toxic.

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The announcement of the alarming thefts came through the Wallkill Police Department's Facebook page. In the announcement, it detailed how since the pandemic, the theft of catalytic converters throughout the entire region has skyrocketed.

Cause of Skyrocketing Catalytic Converter Thefts

There are a number of reasons for why the theft of catalytic converters has become such a problem. The pandemic caused numerous issues around the world but in reference to catalytic converters, the main problem currently is "scarcity". Specifically, the Wallkill PD Facebook post stated...


During the COVID-19 pandemic, the supply chain for precious metals became backed up. Due to labor shortages and restrictions, the metals in catalytic converters could not be mined, which caused their value to skyrocket.

These stolen catalytic converts are also fetching big money once they have been resold. The post went on to say that the stolen converters have been valued at anywhere between "$150 to $1500 dollars". The value of the converter varies based on the type of converter being sold and what the market is like at the current time.

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The Wallkill Police also noted that they have seen the rise in thefts in a particular area and that area would be around Kensington Way. With the numerous reports, the Wallkill Police are already taking measures to help reduce the number of thefts and have also given advice to the public at how they can protect themselves.


Wallkill Police Advice to Thwart Thieves

First and foremost, the Facebook post stated that the police department has begun "directed patrols" in the area of Kensington Way to combat theft attempts. Some of the tips given by the police department for the public can also help combat the issue.


The first bit of advice was that residents are encouraged to get your vehicle's catalytic converter etched. Quite literally, auto shops have the ability to etch a license plate number into a catalytic converter. According to the post, this makes the converters more difficult to sell because it means they can be tied back to the original crime.

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Some other tips for the public are simple measures like parking your vehicle indoors, parking near a good source of light or parking in an area with cameras. All of these things can act as deterrents for potential thieves.

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Lastly the police also said that residents can make some additions to their vehicles that can combat the thefts. One of those options was adding a dashboard camera with a motion detection device, so then the camera will record anyone or anything getting to close. Also, anti-theft systems can also be good investments and that auto shops can add devices to catalytic converters that make them more difficult to steal.

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