Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Stolen bike recovery story

The players:
  • Joe, a cop who's also a Cat 3 road racer and Cat B Cyclocross racer.
  • Brigitte, a racer who commutes on a $7000 Serotta.
  • Mr. Pudge, a ratty overweight dirtbag in sneakers who stole Brigitte's bike right off of the light rail train.
  • Matthew, the guy who saw Brigitte's bike at a Wells Fargo ATM and snapped a photo of Mr. Pudge with the bike.
Sgt. Joe got the ATM transaction information from Wells Fargo, got his address from the DMV, gave Mr. Pudge a visit and retrieved the bike. Read the whole story at Velo Review.

Finally, Sgt Joe's tips on identifying stolen bikes:
  • Someone riding a bike that has clipless pedals wearing tennis shoes.
  • A tweeker riding a custom titanium Serotta cross bike.
  • Joshua Hutchens of Cyclepath has a good tactic of yelling “Hey that’s my bike” and seeing if the guy takes off running. We call that a clue.
And I call that good detective work.


  1. Good story, but I ride on clipless pedals with street shoes pretty often. I hope that doesn't make me a suspect.

  2. Yeah, I think I'd also fall victim to profiling.

  3. We should get a bunch of cycling blogs to start a collection for this cop, maybe an unofficial reward or something.

    Talk about an awesome cop.

  4. What are the odds on conviction? Receiving stolen goods--pretty good. Bike theft (in this case grand larceny)--very poor.

  5. ...this is like a love story, only better...
    ...major props to the very astute matthew, who's heads up move was the first step in getting this ball rolling & to officer santos, who's diligence, knowledge of procedure & maybe an understanding of just how important that bike was to brigette, brought this tale to a happy ending...

    ...hey, fritz, thats my bike !!!...
    ...sorry, just checkin'...

  6. ..."who's" should be "whose" but you knew that when you read it...

  7. Whose who's, peddle pedals, their they're, it's its all the same.

    And yeah, that cop did good.