Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on November 27th, 2012 at 9:59 am
"I saw a guy putting one into the back of his truck, which looked odd — who just throws a nice bike into the back of a pickup?"
I usually think of summer as high season for bike theft; but maybe thieves are so desperate for extra cash this time of year they are looking to change that. From Thanksgiving Thursday (11/22) to this past Sunday (11/25), we had 15 bikes posted to the Stolen Bike Listings. On Sunday alone, there were seven bikes listed! And now I've just heard of a crazy bike theft attempt that happened in broad daylight on November 18th.
According to reader Jonathan R., who lives in Ladd's Addition just south of SE Hawthorne Blvd around 20th, he and his neighbors saw a brazen bike theft attempt right before their very eyes. There was a foot chase, an attempted escape, and then, thankfully, an arrest.
Here's how Jonathan remembers it:
"The owner [of the bikes] had come home from a ride, with two nice bikes on his rack (not locked, I don’t think). I saw a guy putting one into the back of his truck, which looked odd — who just throws a nice bike into the back of a pickup? My neighbor was also eyeballing it all (about 30 feet away from us), and started walking to the truck, when the perp threw a second bike in the back. He was definitely going fast, not like it was his bike.
Then out comes the owner, running toward the truck. He’s able to open the passenger door, but the truck peels out, throwing him off, and hitting his vehicle.
The truck speeds off toward Hawthorne and takes a right. We all run after it, but don’t have much hope. Except that the truck had to stop at that light at 20th, since the cop was parked there, as well. The cop directed the guy to pull over just off of 20th. Arrested a man and a woman. The guy apparently told the cops that he’d bought the bikes at Jantzen Beach."
And he even snapped a photo of the truck:
I have yet to hear back from the Portland Police Bureau to confirm, but Jonathan provided me with Multnomah County case numbers and the names of both arrested parties. One of them was also charged for meth possession. They will go in front of a grand jury on December 3rd.
We've covered a lot of bike theft drama here on the Front Page over the years, but this is one of the best. While I'm glad the bikes were recovered, I'm amazed that there are people driving around and throwing unlocked bikes into the back of their truck. Moral of the story: Never leave your bike unlocked, even for a few minutes.
UPDATE, 11:49am: I haven't heard back from PPB to confirm the arrests; but given the arrest date, the names, and the Multnomah County Court case numbers supplied by Jonathan R., it seems our two thieves are Steven Smart and Annie O'Donovan-Schwartz. Their mug shots are below: