SACRAMENTO, Calif — South Sacramento resident Aimee Widder Wright says she's been a shopper at the Delta Shore shopping center since it opened in Sept. 2017.
But after photos reportedly showing an attempted catalytic converter theft in a parking lot at the shopping center recently went viral, Wright says she now has second thoughts about the security.
"It’s frustrating that the area is seeing more crime because the shopping center has a security guard patrolling, and Walmart also has a security guard that patrols that lot," she told ABC10. "Yet a Good Samaritan caught this happening, not either of the security patrols."
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, the number of reported catalytic converter thefts increased from;
- 1,300 reported thefts in 2018
- 52,000 reported thefts in 2021
Real estate company Pine Tree purchased the Delta Shores shopping center in July for $122.5 million.
A spokesperson for Pine Tree told ABC10 Walmart maintains and secures its parking lot, not the real estate company. They provided us with the following statement:
"Delta Shores management recognizes that catalytic converter theft is on the rise nationwide, including in the Sacramento area, and is working closely with its security partners and local police to monitor the situation and deter this from happening in the shopping center."
Richard Esmilla Magcalas, another South Sacramento resident and longtime Delta Shores shopper, said he would like to see an increased Sacramento police presence at the shopping mall.
"What can a security do? Even if they called 911, (if it's) not life-threatening, law enforcement would not make that their priorities," he said.
Elk Grove police announced they arrested the suspected catalytic converter thief on Sept. 3.
This story was updated Sept. 13 to include comment from Pine Tree officials.