LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A Hillview business is searching for answers after three cars were hit by car part thieves.

RELATED: Car part stolen from local church van

The cars all had the same part stolen from them, a catalytic converter.

"I guess because I'm not a thief I don't know what kind of money is involved in this, I just know what it takes to replace one and I know that's expensive," Missy Nichols said.

Nichols, may not know who stole her catalytic converter, but she's just one of the victims in a string of cataytic converter thefts in Hillview.

"It used to be a thing of the past and its kind of died off a bit and for whatever reason its spiked again here this past month," Nichols said.

The piece is usually made of platinum or platinum-like material. According to cars.com, it is used to convert toxic byproducts to less toxic substances.

"You can't take them to the junk yards right now it was at some point okay but people caught on and now I don't know where they're taking them," Big O Tires employee, Greg Nufer said.

Hillview Police confirm, they have had so many of these cases in January, they assigned a detective to sort through it while consulting neighboring departments on similar crimes.

More from WHAS11: 

►Make it easy to keep up-to-date with more stories like this. Download the WHAS11 News app now. For Apple or Android users.  

Have a news tip? Email assign@whas11.com, visit our Facebook page or Twitter feed.