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Stolen bikes are on the rise…Lets up our game.

Bike theft. Such a tragedy, especially when we loose our childhood friends…take the recent case of Bridget who had a bicycle stolen recently.

Bridget contacted me that her teal green Diamond Back mountain bike was stolen on July 29th between 2pm-11pm near the L stop in Williamsburg Brookyln. Even sadder was this was a present for her 10th birthday, she’s now 29 years old.

Here is what she had to say about the bike and how it was locked.

It was locked with a cable lock (not the best choice, I know. I’d been meaning to get a better one but b/c I hadn’t had any touble yet I thought it was OK. Live and learn). The lock was around the frame, through the front tire, and around a bike rack on N7th between Bedford and Driggs. I’m just now learning that the racks near subway stops are prime targets. I came back from studying at the library at NYU all day, around 11:30 pm, and there was no trace of the bike.

The only picture of the bike I have is attached. It’s kind of on it’s side but you can tell it’s got a black basket. I also found a picture on the internet of the men’s version of it. Same color, style. I don’t think they make the Traverse anymore – I got this one when I was 10 years old. It’s not “fancy” in any way, but I love that thing.”

Ouch. Sorry Bridget, we’ll keep an eye open. If anyone has information, contact Bridget McFadden, email: bridgetmcfadden@hotmail.com, or phone 574-238-3407.

Meanwhile, I heard some good news, but haven’t got the full details. Remember the 3rd ward bike stolen from the wife of an associate of Rankin and Taylor?
Saw this on twitter.

It does happen.

Meanwhile, DNA Info reports a big spike in bicycle thefts this year, especially in Williamsburg Brooklyn.

Bike Thefts Quadruple This Year in Williamsburg, Police Say
By: Meredith Hoffman
July 30th, 2012

WILLIAMSBURG — Bike thefts in Williamsburg and Greenpoint have quadrupled in the past year, skyrocketing from 24 in the first half of 2011 to 96 in the first half of 2012, cops said.

“It’s happening all over,” said the 94th Precinct’s commanding officer Deputy Inspector Terence Hurson of the thefts in North Brooklyn. “It’s been increasing since the spring.”

He would not speculate as to why the theft reports had increased.

Hurson said his officers had stepped up efforts to go after stolen bikes, and had made six arrests this year compared with none in the first part of 2011.

But he insisted that more people needed to get their bicycles etched, or tagged with identification codes, to help officers track down and identify stolen bikes.

Read more: here.

Not sure about how accurate the police numbers are, but there is good information in here. Regardless it’s important to securely lock your bike and find a way of identifying it. I don’t recommend getting your bicycle engraved by the local precinct, they tend to do a sloppy job, although I appreciate their efforts. One clever trick is to take some sort of identifying document, such as a bill of sale or photograph of you and the bike, wrap it in a zip lock back and stash it in the handlebars. Then if the bike is recovered, you can pull off the hand grip or bar wrapping and show the documentation. You may see your stolen bike out on the street, grab it and call the police, but they really won’t be able to help you unless you can prove it’s your property. You could get your local bike shop to put some identification on it, at least a sticker or maybe even a bar code.


Recently I discovered, Bike Shepherd which partnered up with lock giant, Kryptonite. They have a whole QR code id system that helps register your bike using smart phones.

Follow them on twitter, @bikeshepard.

Getting a lot of reports of theft here on my blog and reading that article I have revamped my stolen bikes page. It’s still kind of tedious for me to post there so I always recommend using, bikewatchnyc.wordpress.com It’s super up to date and utilizes twitter instantaneously for people to use social networking and be on the look out.

The page also included my tips on what equipment to use and some basic tips on secure locking. This was taken from a travel guide book I co-authored last year, Bike NYC.

1 comment to Stolen bikes are on the rise…Lets up our game.

  • Megul

    This is terrible I have had a few bikes meet a mysterious end aswell. I reccommend etcing, gps and a good lock. If you are really smart and happen to live near a storage / bike parking facility I suggest you use that. I use one by my house called Park circle storage and it is amazing how easy its made things for me. No more lugging it up stairs or worrying where its going to go and the best part is I can rest easy knowing I am going to find my bike in the morning and it will be whole and undamaged! For anyone who want to find mor einfo heres the site parkcircle storage.com.