Man shot while confronting catalytic converter thieves, Long Beach police say

A man was shot early this morning after confronting multiple people who were trying to steal the catalytic converter from the car he was sleeping in, police said.

Police say they were called to a nearby hospital at around 4:49 a.m. Tuesday after a man checked in with non-life-threatening injuries to the upper body after being shot in the 5400 block of East Ocean Boulevard in the Belmont Shore area.

Long Beach Police Department spokesperson Allison Gallagher said a preliminary investigation revealed that two men were asleep in a vehicle when they were awakened by the sound of sawing coming from underneath them.

One of the men who had been sleeping in the car got out and saw multiple men trying to steal the catalytic converter from under the car, Gallagher said.

When the man tried to confront them, one of the suspects trying to steal the catalytic converter shot him in the upper body and fled in a dark-colored sedan, Gallagher said.

Police and gang detectives responded to the area where the shooting happened and they are investigating the incident.

Violent crime rose almost 8% in Long Beach last year, police say

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Fernando Haro is the Long Beach Post's breaking news and public safety reporter.