Louisiana has seen a nearly 3,000% increase in catalytic converter thefts since 2019

William Taylor Potter
Lafayette Daily Advertiser

Louisiana had an estimated 800 catalytic converter thefts in 2022, according to research from Been Verified – an increase of nearly 3,000% since 2019’s 27.

Been Verified, a website providing background check services, analyzed data from the National Insurance Crime Bureau and Google search data to see if these crimes have been on the rise in recent years. The company found that the nation saw a 540% increase in thefts between 2020 and 2022.

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In Louisiana, the research shows the state had 27 thefts in 2019, then saw a 185.2% increase to 77 in 2020. In 2021, the state had an estimated 519 catalytic converter thefts – an increase of 574% from 2020 and 1,822.2% from 2019. In 2022, the state had an estimated 800 thefts, a 54.1% increase from the previous year and a 2,863% increase from 2019.

Louisiana ranked 39th for the most thefts per 100,000 automobiles in 2021. In 2022, the state ranked 18th. Louisiana had the 10th-largest increase in thefts from 2021.

Catalytic converters are a device that control exhaust emissions from cars. Because these devices are located outside of the car and they use precious metals like platinum, palladium and rhodium, they tend to be a target for theft.

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The cars most often targeted by catalytic converter theft in 2020 nationwide were the Toyota Prius, the Toyota 4Runner, the Honda Element, the Toyota Tacoma and the Honda Accord, according to Been Verified’s report.