LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- A Henderson auto shop held an event on Saturday to make catalytic converters harder to steal.

At "Etch and Catch," Sansone's Automotive etched vin numbers into catalytic converters in exchange for donations to the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth.

A catalytic converter is one of the most valuable parts in a car. It is also one of the easiest to steal.

Henderson Police, which supported the Etch and Catch event, said marking a catalytic converter will help them identify it if it is stolen. That is particularly important, considering the part can cost upward of $2,000 to replace.

Sansone's Automotive co-owner Macarena Logue said they came up with Saturday's event after their own run in with catalytic converter thieves.

auto shop catalytic converter

"It actually happened to us," she said. "We were so busy this summer and it was after hours. The guys had closed the bay doors and within an hour one of our customers' cars got hit. And it takes three minutes for them to take it."

On top of etching the converters, workers at Sansone's also painted them bright red to make them easier for police to spot.

The auto shop offers these same services year-round.

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