Armed suspects caught on video stealing catalytic converter from Gardena home

A homeowner in Gardena got a shocking surprise when she saw three armed suspects allegedly stealing the catalytic converter of her car. 

The crime happened in the early morning hours of June 4 near 156th Street and Gramercy. 

The victim said she entered her Toyota Prius, which was parked in the driveway, and started the engine but heard a loud and unusual noise coming from underneath the car. 

After reviewing surveillance video, she spotted three armed men allegedly stealing her catalytic converter. The video, shared with FOX 11, shows one suspect using a floor jack to raise the car and steal the device while the other two acted as lookout.

One of the lookouts was holding what appeared to be a semi-automatic handgun, which he pointed towards the victim's home and security camera multiple times. It appears a second suspect was also armed. 

The suspects then fled in a dark-colored sedan, Gardena Police said. There was no clear description of the suspects.

Anyone with information regarding the theft is urged to call Detective Liliana Pinela at 310-217-9654.

This incident comes just two weeks after soap star Johnny Wactor was killed by catalytic converter thieves in downtown LA. The 'General Hospital' actor confronted three suspects who were in the process of stealing his catalytic converter.


Catalytic converters are popular among thieves because they are easily stolen and contain precious metals including platinum. California accounts for 37% of catalytic converter theft claims nationwide, with about 1,600 reported stolen each month, the Associated Press reports.