SPOKANE, Wash. — The arrest of a suspect linked to a catalytic converter theft in North Spokane led police to seize three cars, and recover additional stolen property in the process, according to the Spokane Police Department (SPD).
On Friday, Spokane police officers arrested a suspect for allegedly stealing a catalytic converter from a car parked outside a retail outlet in North Spokane in late March.
Before the theft, witnesses noticed two men sitting in a truck close to the car the catalytic converter was stolen from. The witnesses saw one man exit the truck and reported hearing the sound of metal being cut coming from underneath the car a short time later.
Witnesses were able to provide a description of the truck to police. Detectives with SPD's Stolen Property Enforcement and Recovery Unit developed probable cause to arrest the suspect and another man for second-degree theft, second-degree malicious mischief and first-degree trafficking of stolen property.
On Friday morning, officers arrested the suspect and seized the truck. The suspect was booked into the Spokane County Jail.
Police are still looking for another man linked to the crime. While officers were searching for him at a home the suspect is known to frequent, they found a car identified as the getaway vehicle in the theft of a $1,300 guitar earlier this week.
Officers also found more stolen property and a visible handgun inside another car in the driveway. Both cars were seized, according to SPD.
Catalytic converter thefts are a growing concern in the Spokane area, according to police. Thieves steal converters and sell them for as much as $500, but leave victims with repair costs of upwards of $2,000.
In this case, the victim had an estimated repair cost of $2,800.
Police are asking the public to be alert and to notify the police if they see someone under a car or hear metal being cut.