Three men arrested in connection to catalytic converter thefts in Chandler
CHANDLER, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- Three men were arrested on Sunday after officers found 11 stolen catalytic converters in the backseat of their car in Chandler, according to court documents.
Police arrested Tevon Kroncke, Robert Canez, and Jesus Banuelos in connection to the thefts. According to court documents, the three men stole a catalytic converter from a work truck at a home near Alma School Road and Chandler Boulevard on Sunday morning. One of the men pointed a gun at the homeowner and then the three took off in a BMW.
Police found the BMW a few blocks away and tried to pull the car over. However, the car took off and police found the car abandoned at a shopping mall near Chandler Boulevard and Gilbert Road. Police found Kroncke and Canez at a nearby bus stop and Banuelos was found at a Fry’s Food and Drug store in the same shopping area. According to court documents, officers found 11 catalytic converters and several saw-blades in the car. Police also found a gun thrown into the bushes nearby. Banuelos had fentanyl pills on him as well when he was searched by police, according to court paperwork.
Canez denied being involved in the theft and said he did not know Kroncke and Banuelos, detectives noted. Police say Kroncke told officers he was picked up by the two men to steal the converters and admitted to stealing three to four converters in a span of two hours. Kroncke also admitted while the men were at the Chandler home, one of the other men said someone was outside, so the three left. Police paperwork states that Kroncke admitted to parking the car behind a building and running off.
Kroncke was booked on one count of armed robbery with a deadly weapon and one count of third-degree burglary. Canez was booked on one count of armed robbery with a deadly weapon, one count of unlawful flight from law enforcement, and one count of third-degree burglary. Banuelos was booked on one count of armed robbery with a deadly weapon, third-degree burglary, one count of narcotic drug possession, and one count of drug paraphernalia possession.
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