NEW BRUNSWICK — Rutgers University police have been investigating the thefts of catalytic converters that were cut from the undercarriages of vehicles parked on campus.

The thefts occurred on several parking lots between April 7 and 19.

Police said the vehicles targeted on campus included Honda Accords, an Acura TSX, a Honda Civic, a Hyundai Sonata, and a Ford van within parking lots 51, 62, 58C (all three on Busch Campus, Piscataway) and parking lot 80 (Douglass Campus, New Brunswick).

To deter catalytic converter thefts, police suggested parking cars in a garage or well-lit area. Owners should adjust the alarm on the vehicle to activate from vibrations, such as those produced by a saw or from the jacking or lifting of the vehicle.

Car owners should consider installing a catalytic converter-specific security device. Report suspicious activity to the police immediately, police said.

Thieves want the platinum and palladium contained in the converters. The metals can be sold on the black market for hundreds of dollars.

Rutgers police asked that anyone with information, or who may have been in the areas at the time, contact RUPD's Detective Bureau at 848-932-8025.

Jen Ursillo is a reporter and anchor for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach her at jennifer.ursillo@townsquaremedia.com

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