COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio U.S. Senator J.D. Vance is co-sponsoring a bipartisan bill to address and reduce the thefts of catalytic converters.
Vance - along with fellow Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) – introduced the Preventing Auto Recycling Thefts (PART) Act.
The legislation would ensure new vehicles’ catalytic converters are fitted with a traceable identification number and make the theft of the parts a criminal offense.
“This legislation offers a commonsense solution to the rampant problem of catalytic converter theft,” said Vance. “In Ohio, our law enforcement community is reporting these crimes at a shocking frequency and small businesses are being forced to incur preventative costs. I’m proud to introduce this bill with my colleagues and provide our law enforcement with some much-needed assistance to get this problem under control.”
The legislation is also supported by Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost and State Rep. Bob Young, who are working to address the issues at the state level.
“Catalytic converters are easy to steal, tough to track and hard to replace,” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost. “This proposal would give law enforcement more effective tools to curb the ridiculous number of converter thefts and better protect Ohioans.”
For the past few years, catalytic converter thefts have been a growing issue, including in central Ohio.
In September 2022, a theft ring in Franklin County was busted for stealing 13,000 catalytic converters valued at approximately $1.4 million.
This week, a Columbus man pleaded guilty to 15 felonies in connection with catalytic converter thefts.
According to court documents, Tommy Cox was accused of stealing more than 1,000 catalytic converters from multiple counties.