Police are tightlipped about a rash of shootings and murders that took place in the Jefferson Park, West Adams and Baldwin Hills communities in early September. Several of the shootings were retaliatory and started with a confrontation in Benny Hahn Potter Park. At a community meeting residents expressed concern about being in the crosshairs of a current gang war. Police reported that although some of the shootings were narcotics and domestic violence related, a majority were indeed gang related. They were unwilling to identify the gangs involved, citing the need to protect “ongoing investigations.” They did say they have employed greater visibility in the community and will report the results of their investigation when it is completed. Stay tuned.
Theft of Catalytic Converters On The Rise
Detectives at the Los Angeles Police Department’s Wilshire Division are cautioning the public to be aware of catalytic converter thefts in the Wilshire vicinity.
Since January 1, 2014, the Wilshire Division has experienced 34 thefts from vehicles involving catalytic converters. The majority of them have occurred south of Wilshire Boulevard, mostly in the area west of Rimpau Boulevard to Fairfax Avenue and south of Wilshire Boulevard to Venice Boulevard. Seven have occurred north of Beverly Boulevard.
Catalytic converters were introduced in 1975 to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s stricter exhaust emission regulations. Early models were known as “two-way” converters, which were replaced in 1981 by “three-way” models. However, both types of converters are still in use.
Because of the converters’ external location and use of precious metals such as platinum, palladium, rhodium, and gold, which have been steadily rising in value and demand, catalytic converters are a target for thieves. The problem is especially common among late-model trucks and SUVs because of their high ground clearance and easily removed bolt-on attachment. Welded-in converters are also at risk of theft. They can be easily cut off, and their removal can be dangerous as well as very damaging to other vehicle components. Replacement of a catalytic converter can cost well over $1,000.
Established in August of 2008 by writer, artist Dianne V. Lawrence, The Neighborhood News covers the events, people, history, politics and historic architecture of communities throughout the Mid-City and West Adams area in Los Angeles Council District 10.