PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A Portland man was left with a hefty repair bill after a catalytic converter was stolen from his van, and it was all caught on camera.
Jonathan Weber said he was loading a U-Haul for a client on TaskRabbit in Portland on Northeast 9th Avenue and Roselawn Saturday morning. TaskRabbit is an online marketplace that matches freelance labor with local tasks, such as cleaning or moving.
Weber remembers not suspecting anything until he turned on his van.
“Sat in my car, turn the ignition and an extremely loud sound almost like an explosion startled me so much I actually thought that I’d gotten into the wrong car,” said Weber. “I stepped out of the car, and there was a note on my windshield that said, ‘Your catalytic converter has been stolen.’”
He then checked with a neighbor who caught it on his Ring doorbell camera. In the video, it shows a truck pulled up next to a parked maroon van and minutes later a loud sawing noise is heard.
Weber estimates up to $2,500 to repair his van and $2,000 in lost wages considering he uses the van as a full-time gig economy worker. With the coronavirus pandemic still impacting gig workers, he said it’s tough to deal with these setbacks.
“Working in the gig economy is extremely stressful. You’re constantly on the go and you do not know how much money you will make day to day,” he noted.
Despite not having his van until repairs are complete, Weber is hopeful for the future and plans to install an anti-theft device on his next catalytic converter.
He suggests for others to take precautions such as keeping your vehicle where you can see it and have comprehensive auto insurance, which he did not have at the time of the theft.
Weber has set-up a GoFundMe to help with his repairs. So far, he has raised $815 towards a $4,500 goal.