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A man died Monday after being run over by a car he was trying to steal a catalytic converter from in Sacramento, California, authorities said.
Officials responded to reports of a collision between a vehicle and a pedestrian at Block 8100 of Timberlake Way around 4:45 a.m., KXTV reported, citing Sacramento Police Department.
CATALYST THEFT INCREASES NATIONWIDE IN 2022
Police said officers arrived at the scene and found the man seriously injured. He was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.
According to local reports, officials identified the man as 28-year-old Jose Adolfo Rangel.
Investigators said they believe Rangel tampered with the vehicle to steal its catalytic converter before the collision.
Fox News contacted the Sacramento Police Department but did not immediately hear a response.
Catalytic converters are part of a vehicle’s exhaust system and control emissions. It contains valuable metals that criminals can carve out in seconds and sell to junkyards for a profit. Replacing a stolen catalytic converter can cost hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.
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Catalyst thefts have increased in cities across the country this year.
Minneapolis police have reported a nearly 38% increase in catalytic converter theft compared to this time last year. Dallas saw a 20% increase and the Philadelphia Police Department saw a 172% increase. According to the Las Vegas Police Department, officers have seen an increase of about 87%.
Fox News’ Mills Hayes contributed to this report.