55 catalytic converter thefts reported in Edmonton over the last week: police

Jan 3 2020, 3:18 pm

Edmonton Police Service is alerting the public about catalytic converter thefts that continue to be an issue in the city, with 55 new occurrences reported to police in the last week alone.

According to a release from EPS, police are continuing to investigate catalytic converter thefts, which are estimated by police to be up to 500 since October 2019.

Police say the most recent arrest for catalytic converter theft came yesterday, Thursday, January 2, 2020 near 94 Avenue and 152 Street.

West Division patrol officers report responding to a theft of vehicle call in progress, and were able to track the suspect at a nearby home using police service dog “Bady.”

Police say the dog led them to a residence near 93 Avenue and 148 Street.

Arnold Boutin, 27, was taken into custody and charged with two counts of mischief, possession of B&E tools, and possession of a controlled substance.

According to a release, over the holidays EPS also arrested “a trio of prolific property crime suspects following a pair of catalytic converter thefts on December 29, 2019.”

Police followed 37-year-old Kristopher Peter, 55-year-old Vassilios Plougaris, and 32-year-old Mark Johnston, to Leduc where they were witnessed cutting the catalytic converter out of a F-350 in a residential neighbourhood.

Police say another catalytic converter from a motor home was also located inside the suspect vehicle, during a vehicle stop upon their return to Edmonton.

According to police, the most common vehicles being targeted for catalytic converter thefts are SUVs, Hondas, Hyundais, vans such as Ford E-Series, and Ford F-Series trucks.

A total of 35% of incidents occurred overnight involving vehicles parked predominantly in commercial parking lots, followed by residential or apartment parking lots.

Anyone with information related to catalytic converter thefts is asked to contact EPS.