5 charged after hundreds of catalytic converters stolen from Mercedes-Benz plant

By WVUA 23 News Reporter Gracie Johnson

TUSCALOOSA – Five people are facing charges following a rash of catalytic converter thefts at the Mercedes-Benz U.S. International plant in Vance last year.

Three of those arrested were employees with a contracting company that had access to plant grounds, where investigators said they stole new catalytic converters on several occasions.

Mercedes staff caught these suspects on camera loading several barrels full of almost 300 catalytic converters into their work trucks and later returned with no barrels.

“In June of 2021, the (Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Office) was notified by Mercedes-Benz security company that they had had theft of a large number of catalytic converters from within the plant,” said TCSO Criminal Investigations Division Sgt. Josh Hastings.

WVUA 23 reached out to representatives from Mercedes-Benz and they sent the following statement:

“We have worked with local authorities regarding this investigation. We have no further comment.”

Three of the five men arrested are charged with stealing converters and were identified as:

  • Timmy Norris
  • Larry Jenkins
  • Darius Woods

Officers said the men took the converters to a junkyard in Abernant and sold them to owner Terry Kimbrell. Investigators said they believe Kimbrell transferred those to catalytic converter dealer Cyrus Fannin.

All five were charged with felonies and have since been released from jail on bond.

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Categories: Crime, Featured, Local News