57 catalytic converters stolen from school vans, 3rd time in 10 months Trumbull school vehicles targeted

A new school year means new beginnings. But just one day before Cooperative Educational Services in Trumbull welcomed back its first students, staff discovered a problem that unfortunately wasn’t new. Thieves had vandalized 19 of CES’s transportation vehicles, cutting out a total of 57 catalytic converters, according to Trumbull police. It happened in the overnight hours Thursday in the lot at 25 Oakview Dr. where the vans are stored.
Lt. Brian Weir, of Trumbull police, said the vehicles were Chevy Express vans. Each one had three catalytic converters.
CES provides educational support and services to more than a dozen school districts and communities in Fairfield County. The first students started Friday, but CES Executive Director Charles Dumais said kids weren’t impacted. In an email to News 12, Dumais wrote, "Due to our relationships with area districts and EdAdvance, our partner Regional Educational Service Center, we were able to operate without any service disruption."
Dumais also said CES is working with local dealerships to get replacements, but supply chain issues will slow that down.
“I don’t have the total value of theft, but they are several thousand dollars per catalytic converter,” Weir told said. “So, you’re talking about tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of larceny.”
It’s the third time in 10 months police are investigating a school fleet being hit. In April they were called to the Durham School Services lot on Spring Hill Road after catalytic converters were stolen from 16 small buses. Last November, CES was targeted for the first time when 28 vehicles were damaged.
Dumais said after those thefts, CES put additional security measures into place so staff will look into how this still happened again.
Weir told News 12 investigators are following some leads and working on getting surveillance video from the cameras there.