Woman whose catalytic converter was stolen twice speaks out as thefts surge

As catalytic converter thefts ramp up across the country, lightning strikes twice on some unfortunate victims. A woman living in the Berkeley neighborhood of Denver has been attacked twice in two months.

“I thought, ‘Is that a sick joke?’ I feel like I’m living in a time warp,” said Anna Scopp.

In November, her Lexus was attacked by catalytic converter thieves in front of her house.

“It sounded like a monster truck like it was that loud. So I actually made a video of it and sent it to my dad, and he immediately replied and was like, ‘Somebody cut up your converter,'” Scopp said.


Her father was right and she reported the theft to the police but never got a reply.

The Denver Police Department says these cases can be difficult to investigate because the converters don’t have serial numbers and, in cases with no suspicious information, may not have the resources to dispatch an officer.

Less than two months later, Scopp was returning to her car after a yoga class and heard a noise that seemed too familiar.

“I spun my car and heard the exact same thing — it’s just loud and vibrating like I knew right away,” Scopp said.

Scopp asked nearby businesses to review their security footage. A nearby restaurant spotted video of the thief in action.

She told police when she reported the second incident.

“They really reacted this time, which is nice,” said Scopp.

Denver police say they are following up with local businesses and are asking anyone who recognizes the man in surveillance video to call Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720-913-7867, where they can provide tips anonymously.

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Anna Scopp

Scopp says the parts replacement cost $2,500 each time. Her car insurance covered it, but now she’s losing that coverage, despite a perfect driving record.

“I actually got booted from my insurance company because of this,” Scopp said.

The irony of it all? Both times, the thieves escaped with the wrong part.

“The two people that did that both cut the wrong part. They cut my resonator, they didn’t even cut my catalyst,” Scopp said.

Denver police say hybrids, like the one Scopp drives, are targeted most often for catalytic converter thefts.

The department recommends drivers of these high-risk vehicles and SUVs, vans and high-clearance trucks to tag their own catalytic converters with serial numbers to deter thieves.

Authorities also say they are pushing for a new law that would require identification to sell catalytic converters to scrapyards and pawnshops.