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Police looking for suspects in attempted catalytic converter theft

WTAP News @ 6- Vienna Police looking for suspects catalytic converter theft
Published: Jan. 13, 2022 at 12:52 PM EST
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VIENNA, W.Va. (WTAP) - Vienna police are looking for a Marion County couple suspected in a catalytic converter theft from Monday.

Vienna Police Chief Mike Pifer says his department got arrest warrants for Marcus McCormick, 43, and his wife Shelley McCormick, 30, after they were allegedly seen trying to cut off a catalytic converter in the parking lot of Grand Central Mall Monday afternoon.

“It was in broad daylight. Pretty brazen,” Pifer said.

Police were called to the mall around 2:30 p.m. Monday by a witness who says he saw a man, that police now believe to be Marcus McCormick, tampering with a 2021 Toyota Highlander. The witness told police that a woman, that police now believe to be Shelley McCormick, was standing near the man and noticed they were being watched. She then allegedly got his attention and the two of them ran away.

Police say the witness described an alleged getaway car to 911 dispatchers, helping police find it nearby not long after.

No one was in the car, but police towed and searched it. Investigators say they found tools inside that could be used to remove a catalytic converter, as well as cut pipes, two-way radios, and “items linking Mr. McCormick” to the car.

Police say they were initially able to track down Shelley McCormick, but did not hold her while their investigation continued.

Now, police have warrants out for both the McCormicks’ arrest and encourage anyone who knows their whereabouts to call the Vienna Police Department at 304-295-8563. Their warrants are for grand larceny, a felony charge that police say carries a possible one-to-three year prison sentence.

The victim in this case, Caldwell resident Tallie Yocabet, says she hopes justice will prevail.

“I know we are living in some rough economic times but there are jobs out there. There are other things for people to do besides steal someone else’s property.”

Yocabet tells her story in the video below.

Pifer said catalytic converter thefts are increasing. There have been 48 in the last year in Wood County.

“We’ve seen I think with the influx of illicit narcotics and drugs, people get desperate. That may be the case in this situation. But, you’ve seen crimes of this type becoming more and more prevalent that you hadn’t seen in the past,” Pifer said.

Vienna investigators say that the Parkersburg Police Department is also investigating a similar incident, in which a catalytic converter had been stolen off of a Toyota Highlander at St. Joseph Recover Center.

There was another alleged catalytic converter theft near the mall just over a week ago.

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