Toyota Prii in Bloomington targeted over weekend for catalytic converter thefts

Three owners of Toyota Prii were targeted for catalytic converter thefts according to owners who filed online reports with the Bloomington Police Department, according to BPD Capt. Ryan Pedigo.

Prii is the plural form of Toyota Prius chosen by Toyota.

The first report of a stolen catalytic converter and oxygen sensor was filed around 6:08 p.m. Monday by a Prius owner in the 500 block of South Fess Avenue. A second report was filed around 6:49 p.m. Monday in the 500 block of South Hawthorne Avenue. Then around 7:57 p.m. Monday in the 1200 block of East Wylie Street another report was made.

One of the Prius owners told police they heard a truck idling outside their residence, and when they started their car the next morning, they heard the very loud noise of their 2005 Prius running without a catalytic converter. The owner found cut wires upon inspecting the vehicle.

The Prius is the biggest target in the United States for catalytic converter theft according to Newsweek:

“Last year, theft claim frequency for the 2004-2009 Toyota Prius was 58.1 claims for 1,000 insured claim vehicle years,” according to Newsweek.

An Indiana congressman recently introduced a bill to attempt to reduce converter thefts:

“Baird, who represents western Indiana’s 4th District, said the Preventing Auto Recycling Thefts (PART) Act would require new vehicles to have a VIN number stamped onto the converter and create a grant program for stamping VIN numbers onto catalytic converters of existing vehicles,” according to WTHR.

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