A suspect living near the Village of Fenney has been linked to stolen catalytic converters.
Jarel John Johnson, 74, of 5115 Warm Springs Ave. in Wildwood, was arrested Monday on a felony charge of acting as an unregistered secondary metal recycler, according to an arrest report from the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office. He was taken into custody and booked at the Sumter County Detention Center. He was released after posting $2,000 bond.
Catalytic converters are being stolen from vehicles in The Villages and law enforcement is urging residents to keep an eye out.
“It takes two minutes to steal a catalytic converter,” said Lt. Robert Siemer, Sumter County Sheriff’s Office district commander for The Villages.
He said if you see someone “suspiciously” crawling under a vehicle, you should immediately report it to the sheriff’s office
“If you see something, say something, as Sheriff Farmer always says,” Siemer said.
The catalytic converters are especially enticing to thieves because of the precious metals they contain – platinum, palladium and rhodium. The price per ounce of platinum is currently around $1,200.