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

Bike thefts always a risk
Going beyond traditional chain and lock tactics, some City College students take extra measures to deter bicycle thieves. Teri Barth// [email protected]

BICYCLE COMMUTERS AT CITY College should feel safe locking up before attending class, according to campus police, but some students and staff are still concerned.

Dave Haggerty, bicycle advocate and City College professor of Human Career Development, said that there are bicycle lockers on campus and that he wouldn’t feel comfortable locking his bike up any other way because of his knowledge of thefts around campus.

“The problem is there needs to be more of [the bike lockers]. Sacramento City is aware of ‘repeat stealers,’ and I really would love to see some sort of sting operation because I believe that could be effective in catching some of these people,” said Haggerty.

Some students said they are using the best bicycle protection they can afford.

“If I had more funds, I would feel better [about bike safety] and could buy a better lock,” said Jake Jennings, computer science major. “As far as the atmosphere on campus—it’s OK. I just worry because my lock is so cheap.”

Friends Cory Browning, industrial design major, and Tommy Lomeli, ceramics major, generally feel secure leaving their bicycles on campus.

“If you have a U-lock, you’re pretty safe, I think,” said Lomeli. “I don’t really worry about it too much.”

“I’ll lock up anywhere,” said Browning. “Although I would like to see some cameras or maybe some sort of advanced security at all of the bike racks. That’d be awesome.”
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Out of the 16 possible bike racks on campus where bicycle riders can lock up, only two of them remain under video surveillance, according to campus officials. Of those two destinations, the video surveillance only covers them because they happen to share the same screen with a neighboring parking structure.

“A lot of it has to do with funding to the school,” explained Greg Hayman, director of operations at City College. “When the district put those cameras up, the main idea was to protect unattended vehicles and hopefully prevent theft. Unfortunately, bicycles were not of top priority at the time.”

According to Sgt. Jay Lampano of City College’s campus police, the number of thefts this year for bicycles alone is actually lower than what he’s seen in his previous years with the Los Rios District Police Department.

He believes that the responsibility for bike safety lies with the students and the choices they make when buying protection for their items.

“The majority of the bikes that are being stolen and reported are being secured by cable locks and chains. These are very easy to defeat,” said Lampano. “There is no one perfect solution to these problems. There’s always going to be a way to get around it even with extra protection. There’s always going to be a way to figure out how to break into a U-lock or bike locker or whatnot later on,” said Lampano.

“I think an email could be helpful for [incoming students] saying, ‘This is a recommended type of lock. It might be more expensive, but guess what? Your bike’s going to be a little more protected,’” said Lampano.

“Knowing we’re a very centrally located and accessible campus, meaning anybody can come on with no prohibitions whatsoever, students need to be aware and utilize better locking or securing systems for their bicycles,” Lampano said.

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