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Police Seek Catalytic Converter Thieves Following Gunfire in South Seattle

Police are looking for two suspected catalytic converter thieves, who fired a handgun while fleeing the scene of an attempted theft early Saturday in South Seattle.

Around 4:45 AM, a resident of the 5700 block of Bangor Avenue South awoke to the sound of sawing outside his home. 

When he stepped outside, he saw two men around his neighbor’s Toyota Prius.

The man shouted at the suspects, who ran to a nearby gold Acura. As the suspects sped away, one of the men fired a handgun out of the car’s sunroof. No one was struck by the gunfire.

Catalytic converter thefts have spiked in the Puget Sound region over the last 18 months. Catalytic converters contain precious metals, which thieves can sell for quick cash. While Priuses seem to be the most targeted vehicle, authorities have received reports of thefts from numerous other makes and models of vehicles. 

To prevent such thefts, detectives would like to remind vehicle owners to try and park their vehicle inside a garage or a well-lit, highly visible area.  Auto part manufacturers also sell after-market devices to further secure catalytic converters.