The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Bicycle theft on the rise

School is back in full swing again, and so is bike theft—within the last two weeks there have been increased reports of bikes stolen at City College, according to campus officials. Chris Keister of the Los Rios District Police Department noted that now that school is back in session, the number of bikes being stolen has risen from being sporadic to pretty regular.

“Not this summer, but last summer we were getting hit real hard,” said Keister. “Since school started up again, we have been seeing [bike theft] up to two and three a week.”

According to Keister, the last bike theft reported to campus police took place Sept. 14. A female student was walking to class and noticed a man over by the bicycles with had a pair of wire cutters hanging out of his pocket. She didn’t have a phone, he said, so she rushed to the cafeteria and had an employee call police.

The suspect was detained and later transported to the Sacramento County Jail, Keister said. The suspect was not a registered student at City College, nor did he have prior violations.

Keister has been a member of the City College force for over five years and said if it wasn’t for the student who reported the incident, police would not have been able to retrieve the bike.

“Most of the time we have not been able to get them back,” said Keister. “In the past, we have had victims identify their bikes for sale on craigslist. We set up a meeting with the sellers, and if we can identify the bike as the victim’s, we [are] able to get it back that way.”

Generally, the bike thieves are not students at City College, said Keister. He described two types of people who normally steal bikes.

“You have the opportunist who just needs a bike to ride from point A to point B,” said Keister.“Then you have the guys who are actually out there doing it. That’s how they make their living and or support their drug habit.”
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Keister said people steal bikes, sell them on Craigslist, or to used bicycle shops, or on the street to support their drug habits.

The most common locks to be broken are cable locks, said Keister, because they are easier to cut. While the Kryptonite U-lock and chain locks are usually left alone, thieves are starting to break into those as well.

“Cable locks are not the greatest lock in the world,” said Keister. “Really, the only thing that stops [thieves] is the big U-bolt locks or a heavy chain lock. They sell small little bolt cutters that are about 12 inches long, so they are concealable in a backpack. If someone puts one of those in a backpack and they’re kneeling next to their bike, they just look like any other student who is just unlocking their bicycle.”

According to Keister, there isn’t a common location where bikes are stolen, and every bike rack on campus has been hit. He encourages students to be cautious of their and call for help or contact campus police if they see suspicious behavior.

“We really need students and staff members to be aware of their         surroundings and to pay attention to things that are going on,” said Keister. “We need a good suspect description and good location. If we have that in a timely manner, the chance of catching someone goes up tremendously.”

Keister said the other way the police can get bicycles back is with a serial number. The police can enter it into the stolen records system and if officers stop a cyclist and see that the bike is stolen, they can retrieve it.

If people see any suspicious behavior on campus, they are encouraged to   contact the City College Police Dispatch at (916) 558-2221, Keister said

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