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Bike Theft

Even a 6-year-old can feel Portland’s massive bike theft problem

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

— This post was co-written by Michael Andersen and Jonathan Maus

KATU-TV ended their evening newscast on Friday with a pretty touching anecdote about a girl who knows how much her dad’s bikes mean to him.

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If only every stolen bike story ended this well

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014
stolen-joelbrown-portrait
Joel Brown, happy with his bright green Kona.
(Photos courtesy of Joel Brown)

We’ve shared dozens of stolen bike recovery stories here on BikePortland over the years. From an editorial standpoint, I usually don’t like to repeat similar stories; but in these cases I make exceptions. Why? Because I know the despair people feel when their bike gets stolen, and I want to give victims hope. I also feel that given what a huge problem bike theft is in Portland (much larger than you might think), I jump at any excuse to cover the topic.

On that note, here’s the story of reader Joel Brown, who emailed his recovery story to us this morning: (more…)

Police distribute images of SE Portland bike thieves in action

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014
Bike theft suspects at work in Eastmoreland this morning.
(Photos: Portland Police Bureau)

The Portland Police Bureau have distributed images of bike thieves who were active in the Eastmoreland Neighborhood this morning.

Here are the rest of the photos:
(more…)

For Portland startup Project 529, fighting bike theft is just the beginning

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014
529 space
The Project 529 team in the office on Wednesday. Their new free mobile app makes it far easier to track and report a stolen bike, but the company has bigger plans.
(Photos by M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Working from an office high above Interstate Avenue, a team of Portlanders has spent the last year quietly building what might be the country’s most ambitious bike-specific software company.

Funded out of pocket by three co-founders and led by the lead creator of the XBox, the ten-person company calling itself Project 529 hit the Internet last month with a web and mobile app that aspires to be a next-generation Stolen Bicycle Registry and with an attention-grabbing petition asking eBay and Craigslist to begin requiring serial numbers for the bikes they sell.

But the most interesting part of Project 529, which is pronounced “five two nine” in reference to the hours of rest and recreation, is what it wants to do.

(more…)

Major bike-fencing operation operates out of two Portland buildings, Lake Oswego police say

Friday, May 16th, 2014
Bike racks at SW 12th and Washington
where stolen bikes are frequently locked up.
(Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)

Fencing operations for stolen bicycles are currently operating out of two downtown Portland buildings, Lake Oswego police say.

Det. Lee Ferguson said in an interview last week that Lake Oswego police officers tracked a handful of bikes stolen from that city to apartment buildings at SW 10th and Salmon and SW 12th and Washington. He said someone operating out of those buildings consistently purchases bicycles from people who steal them, then locks them at bike racks outside.

A third party then stops by to inspect the bikes, Ferguson said, makes arrangements to purchase them, gets a key from the fence and takes them away.
(more…)

Prototype custom carbon fiber bicycle stolen from builder’s garage

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014
This bike — a prototype owned by Argonaut Cycles’ Ben Farver — has been stolen.

(more…)

Let’s help Richard get his bike back

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014
Stolen!

Portlander Richard Lorenz got his high-end Moots titanium mountain bike stolen yesterday afternoon. Then last night he got tips and photos from from two people who saw his bike on the Eastbank Esplanade. Now he’s determined to get his bike back safe and sound and he’s hoping more eyes on the street can help him out.

The bike was taken from inside his car as it was parked in the parking garage on SW 6th and Salmon in downtown Portland. Richard had just sold the bike on eBay and was going to ship it out on Monday. He never got time to box it up and when he went out to his car after work he found his window smashed and the bike gone. He figured it was gone for good, but he still filed a stolen bike listing, made a police report, posted to Craigslist and generally spread the word however he could. (more…)

The Friday Profile: Jeffrey Cramer, Portland’s stolen-bike good Samaritan

Friday, February 28th, 2014
Jeffrey Cramer, who says he can support himself indefinitely as long as he spends just $500 a month, talked to us about bikes, bike theft and living outdoors in Portland.
(Photos by M.Andersen/BikePortland)

When Jeffrey Cramer bought what he now calls “Sarah’s bike” for $10 last Friday night, he wasn’t planning to track down its owner, he said. He just needed a way to get home, because someone had stolen his own bike a week before.

“At that time of night, $10 for a bike ride home was a good deal — you can’t get a cab back to where I live for $10,” he said. “It wasn’t ’til I got home that I realized I was riding a gem.”

Cramer, 48, doesn’t want to say exactly where he lives, except that it’s “way the fucking hell out there.” But five days after he turned down most of a $100 reward for tracking down the owner of the bike he’d bought from the man who stole it, this self-described “vagabond” was willing to have a candid conversation about his decision to live outdoors, the importance of bikes in his life and his own thoughts about Portland’s underground economy of stolen bicycles.

(more…)

This bike theft story will make you feel fantastic about being a Portlander

Monday, February 24th, 2014
Sarah Mirk with the bicycle that was stolen from her Friday night.
(Photos by M.Andersen/BikePortland)

The man was calling, he told Sarah Mirk, from the free phone at Good Samaritan Medical Center.

“I Have your bike,” he’d written in an email to her a few minutes before. “Please e-mail a phone #. as I am not well connected.”

(more…)

Portland Parks Rangers help man recover stolen bike

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014
(L-R) Park Ranger Ray Turner, Seth Burke, and
Park Ranger Karras Kalivas, post-recovery.
(Photos courtesy PP&R)

Portland Parks & Recreation have some good news to share: They’ve helped a Portland man recover his stolen Surly Puglsey fat bike.

Here’s how it went down…

Seth Burke got his Pugsley stolen on from in front of a business in downtown Portland on Monday, February 10th. According to PP&R, who emailed us details about the theft and recovery, Burke worked hard to spread the word about his bike. We tell people all the time that the best way to get your bike back is to pound the pavement and tell anyone who will listen about your bike. Even so, after filing a police report and several days of looking and showing folks photos of his bike, Burke had lost hope.
(more…)

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