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Gun-toting catalytic converter thieves demand cash in robbery near USF

A mechanic works under a lifted vehicle, fixing or inspecting a component.
File image of a catalytic converter installation. | Justin Sullivan/Getty Images | Source: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Catalytic converter thieves held a man at gunpoint and demanded cash as they stripped his car for the sought-after part Saturday morning.

The victim was sat in his parked car near Rossi Park at Rossi Avenue and Anza Street, close to the University of San Francisco's Lone Mountain campus, when four men approached in a vehicle.

The men then got out of their car and began to remove his catalytic converter.

"The victim exited his vehicle," a spokesperson for San Francisco Police Department said. "One suspect who was not underneath his vehicle pulled out a firearm and demanded money from the victim. The victim did not have money to give."

The aftermath of a catalytic converter theft | Courtesy Bill Plumb

The other suspects completed removing the catalytic converter from the vehicle and all the suspects fled the scene in their vehicle, police said.

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The victim reported the crime to the Richmond police station at around 4:30 a.m. Anyone with information is asked to contact the San Francisco police.

The incident comes just days after a gunman opened fire on neighbors who were filming a catalytic converter theft in progress in the Outer Sunset on March 6, apparently yelling "film this" as they shot, according to a witness.

Recently, a Berkeley business owner recounted to The Standard how he was held at gunpoint by catalytic converter thieves on March 1, who told him they "gotta eat."