The key to bike theft

Normal seeming day, I finish my afternoon loop at work, locking up my bike and head up stairs for 10 minutes.  I am ready for my next round, coming down…. and the bike is gone. Security was on patrol somewhere else. I was freaking out, luckily found the guard in time so he can capture the security camera feed. Below is the vid from 1:10 to 2 min is the thief in action. Gone in 60 seconds:

Knowing the direction he went, I stormed off and also informed by dispatcher guy Matt  that I am disabled. He radioed the other coworkers to keep and eye out. I ran to the nearest bike shop with no luck,  C street bike shop.  These guys were cool that Cliff who works there let me borrow a bike to scout around for the thief with my bike.  If anything, I saw more bike thieves roaming around! I made a stop at the Police HQ, where they told me to file this online – otherwise pay $12.  Geez more money to lose?

This was a big loss – this bike I use for commuting in place of a car. All down, I knew the hunt was over, went back to base and told my dispatcher I would run home to get my bike back. Who thought all this marathon training was useless? Proof:


In case you didnt know, I already ran 13 miles before work, and 21 miles of biking FOR work.  I get home to discover both tires flat… still rode it back.  This was more exhausting and slower than the run.  I do my  last jobs of the day for work, to hear Matt call me that my coworkers Will and Reuben got it back!  What a crazy feeling of utter depression to complete relief… as I am about to faint from draining myself.

For some reason, the guy went into Ross clothing/house wares store (to get high on bath salts??), where Rub spotted him, and called Will over…. who went in and muscled the bike off of him. I see Will ride with it back.  Still focused I had one run to do.  So thanked will and hopped on to do the job. When I was approaching base again, I see Matt outside with the perpetrator, next to a cop car.  He said we got him…. I thought the police were there (who my office called) to arrest him.   The thief was trying to claim that the bike was his, showing me my lock and demanding me to use my key to open it.  The key was upstairs… so Matt went to grab it.  I say to the guy, so how was the Chicago Marathon if this is your bike? … As I had a water bottle from it. I asked more questions to make him admit to stealing it, yet he insisted the bike was his (with my unique aerobars mind you).  Then he starts moving slowly away into a sprint before Matt gets back. I yell at the police officer why wont you chase him!?  Turns out he was on another call.  I ask him to radio someone else for me.. instead in a rude manner says for me to call someone and peels out of there.

This was around 4:45pm between C and Broadway on 1st ave

So you may ask, how did he get my bike as seen on the video? Will showed me a set of keys he had on him. Instead of bolt cutters, he had a Master key / Dummy key that opens many locks. You try to be as safe as you can, but criminals are just one step ahead most of the time.  I am so grateful for my co workers who went above and beyond to help capture this guy.  There are so many downtown likely they wont catch him… but just if there is luck as of now I am filing a police report so he can get put away for longer.


3 thoughts on “The key to bike theft

  1. Guus says:

    Wow! Good to hear you got your ride back in the end, after all. As it turns out that there’s not much help to be expected through the official channels, it’s a good thing you co-workers ran into the guy! Have you considered adding some kind of tracking device in/on your ride? I’ve got no first-hand experience with those things (bike theft protection in the Netherlands is kind of pointless 😉 ), but I do know that GPS trackers are available small/light enough to be used for pets. Perhaps a cost-effective way of securing your livelihood?

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