Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

Theft victim "giddy" over recovery of stolen bikes

Posted by on March 26th, 2007 at 8:28 am

It’s been way too long since I last shared a stolen bike recovery story, so I was very pleased to get a call last week from local theft victim Michael Kloeppel.

Back in December, Michael lost his entire fleet of beloved, high-end bikes when thieves hit his Woodstock home.

On Thursday, nearly five months later, he received a call from a hard-working southeast precinct police officer. Here’s the rest of the story as told by Michael:

“…I’m still giddy that I got two of my bikes back…

Yesterday afternoon I received a call at work from the SE Portland Police precinct informing me that they thought they had recovered two of my bikes. When my Colango Fixie and Serotta Nova Special X showed up at the precinct, the detective realized they weren’t just ordinary bikes, and might not have serial numbers, so he turned to your website and searched for “colnago” which retuned the entry you posted for me.

So thanks to a resourceful detective and your website, I have been reunited with two of my bikes!”

Great news Michael, I’m glad you’ll have your bikes back just in time for spring.

Since launching the Stolen Bike Listings in September 2005, we’ve had 610 bikes listed and have recovered at least 20 of them (that I’m aware of).

This success has come from key partnerships with the Portland Police Bureau, the City of Portland, and Finetoothcog.

Summer is approaching, so be extra careful out there. For theft prevention tips and more inspiring recovery stories, check out the BikePortland Bike Theft story archives.

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  • Bjorn March 26, 2007 at 9:06 am

    Any word on what might have happened to the people who took the bikes. I think maybe it is time for Portland to adopt a victim impact panel for bike thieves. Often when people take a bike, or even a bike light, I think they don’t understand that they may be depriving someone of their only means of transportation. Victims of this crime might be more willing to speak to their victimizers as the crime is not a physical one. I think it would be great if the city would facilitate this, and study to see if it helped reduce the rate of reoffending for bike thieves.


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  • Benjamin March 26, 2007 at 9:34 am

    Great news for Mike! Hope the others follow soon…

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  • DK March 26, 2007 at 9:39 am

    Whatever bjorn. Why don’t you set it up in your living room and see how ridiculous you look. As soon as all the “offenders” stop laughing, maybe you can get down to business. Or better yet, just slap their knuckles as they walk through the door. That should do the trick.

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  • Adam-8 March 26, 2007 at 5:15 pm

    Like bjorn I’d also like to hear any information regarding those who took the bikes to begin with.

    Unlike Bjorn, I’d prefer that they lost a hand for stealing them.


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  • Martha March 26, 2007 at 7:06 pm

    The loss of a hand may be a tad harsh. I wouldn’t mind seeing them loose an ear though. I certainly would like too see firm punishment… I can only assume most bike thieves intend to resell the bikes, or perhaps just want a free ride. As of such I think a fine that is far more than they could make off the sale (or several sales) would be a good deterent…

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  • Mike March 26, 2007 at 8:11 pm

    Grand theft velo?

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  • OBS June 8, 2007 at 3:50 pm

    Slow down, Martha. Bike thieves might often be the people really needing some transportation or, like you said, need some cash. In both cases the bike still probably ends up with some poor person who needs one. Lets not go overboard on punishing here; there are far worse crimes.

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