More local businesses being affected by rise in theft

Published: Mar. 26, 2021 at 3:14 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 26, 2021 at 6:36 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The YWCA non-profit organization is the latest business in Alexandria to become a victim of theft after their company vehicles had their catalytic converters stolen off of them.

Katie Vanderlick, the Executive Director of YWCA, said they caught a group of people on their security cameras taking the parts earlier this week. This has left them unable to use the company vehicles for at least the next week and has cost them nearly $10,000.

“I really want our citizens to be aware. I would love for there to be more patrol,” said Vanderlick. “I don’t know what we need and I don’t know what the answer is, but we’ve got to figure something out soon. This is too costly and it’s happening too much.”

The vehicles being out of service has hurt the company because they now can’t pick up the children from schools. Vanderlick says in the meantime, parents are having to leave work early to get the kids until the catalytic converters can be replaced.

“People are working hard. People are trying to give back to their community and then you have people like this who come in and take that away from innocent children and parents working. It’s just very frustrating,” said Vanderlick.

Vanderlick said it will cost them even more money to find safer places to store their vehicles so it doesn’t happen to them again. She says these people are targeting larger commercial vehicles and businesses that have company vans and buses. She did file a police report for the incident.

Josh Peppers, the Public Information Officer for the Alexandria Police Department, says these types of theft are occurring across the state. APD is currently investigating each of the complaints and is following several leads.

APD sent these tips on how residents and businesses can protect their company vehicles:

APD tips on how to protect your company vehicles.
APD tips on how to protect your company vehicles.(KALB)

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