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Agencies team up to bust Southern Indiana theft ring

Published: Jun. 4, 2021 at 5:57 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 9:18 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A theft ring in Southern Indiana has been brought down.

The loot included stolen trailers, an ATV, and a number of catalytic converters.

The investigation included Washington and Orange County but spanned as far as West Virginia.

Indiana State Police, which worked with multiple other agencies, announced the arrests of Adam Brewer, 31, Uriah Stickney, 27, Nicholas Arthur, 29, Jeffrey Deckard, 29, all of Bedford, Indiana.

Four arrests were announced. (Source: LCSD)
Four arrests were announced. (Source: LCSD)(LCSD)

WAVE 3 News safety and security expert D’Shawn Johnson said right around now is when converter thefts ramp up.

“A lot of the cars that are built today have significant more ground clearance than cars years ago,” he said. “So, its easier for someone to slide up under there with a battery operated saw. They can have your catalytic converter off in a matter of 2 or 3 minutes.”

The former LMPD officer has even been a victim himself.

“It happened to me before,” Johnson said. “I had a vehicle parked, hadn’t been driving it for a while. I went out and started it up. It sounded really horrible. So, I knew that someone had stolen the catalytic converter.”

Thieves will take what they’ve stolen and scrap it for several hundred bucks, which can cost those preyed upon up to $2,000 to repair.

To make the job harder for thieves, Johnson suggests a few things:

1) Drivers can get a sleeve or device to protect the part.

2) If someone has a garage, they can put their car in it.

3) Homeowners can light their driveways.

“It kind of deters them from coming to a driveway that’s lit,” Johnson said. “If you’re parking at a business or somewhere, you want to park close to the door or somewhere near the cameras at the entrance of the building.”

Johnson said thieves will often try to avoid cameras when searching for parts to steal.

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