Support for the Beaumont animal shelter after the theft of a catalyst


BEAUMONT, Texas — People gather around the Humane Society of Southeast Texas after video showed a thief hiding under the shelter’s van and cutting out its catalytic converter.

Reactions began pouring in from all over Southeast Texas, with people offering to pay for the repairs.

On Monday, the catalytic converter of the refuge van was stolen.

On Tuesday, 12News exclusively aired their story, and since then there has been an outpouring of support.

From calls to emails and texts, Southeast Texans are offering to lend a hand.

Shelter manager Taylor Westphal is grateful to everyone who reached out.

“The community responded within 24 hours to help us fix our van and try to help us secure our rental in the meantime and Mr Baker with Baker Auto Repair was fantastic and he wasn’t the only one offer help,” Westphal said.

The owner of Baker Auto Repair offers to perform the repairs free of charge.

From towing the van to fixing the baker’s car to having him vouch for the costs for the nonprofit, Tim Baker said it was a good thing to do because he had a personal connection with the shelter.

“The cat we have at home right now, we got it from the Humane Society and they’re a great resource in Beaumont, and we just felt like it was a good thing to try to help them out” , Baker said.

A good thing for Baker Auto Repair, as these catalytic converters can be expensive to replace.

“It can be expensive to replace these components, and it can cost $2,000 to $5,000 to replace them on particular vehicle types,” Baker said.

The animals will soon have their wheels since they just towed the van to the store today, and Westphal with the shelter can only express his gratitude.

“All I can say is thank you, I mean from the bottom of my heart. Thank you,” Westphal said.

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