Naked man fights off catalytic converter thief

Pawtucket man fights off catalytic converter thief naked

You could say Charles Kendrick was naked and…not afraid.

This Wednesday, Kendrick was up playing video games around 2 a.m.

“Playing Grand Theft Auto, funny enough,” he said.

Kendrick heard a grinding sound, like something was getting cut, so he went to investigate.

“I’m naked, I’m naked in my house. I’m relaxing,” he said. “I come out of the house naked and sure enough, there’s somebody under my car.”

Kendrick approached the man and the situation escalated.

“He starts swinging the Sawzall at me,” Kendrick said. “I start fighting with the guy, wrestling with him. He ends up elbowing me, but I still grab onto him and I end up getting up his phone. The cops have that.”

The thief stole Kendrick’s catalytic converter, which is an emission control device containing precious and valuable metals like palladium and rhodium.

NBC 10 News has reported on several businesses being hit by converter thieves just this year, including ones in Warwick and Foster.

“It’s been happening all over the place and it’s crazy,” Kendrick said.

Thieves can sell the catalytic converters at scrap yards or online for several hundreds dollars.

“It’s not the end of the world for me, but there are people who wake up in the morning, they’re not expecting it and they have no way to get to work,” he said.

Kendrick is out about $180 and has a few scratches but is glad he stood his ground.

“I don’t think he was expecting to get caught, and I don’t think he was expecting to get caught by a someone naked,” he said. “I guarantee I wasn’t the first one of the night, but I guarantee you I was the last.”

On Sunday, Cranston police responded to Burlington Coat Factory around 4:30 p.m. for a suspect attempting to steal a catalytic converter from a vehicle in the parking lot. When police arrived, the suspect drove directly at the officers and then onto Garfield Avenue towards Providence in a white Cadillac SUV. Police are investigating

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