PPB steps up bike theft awareness with new video

Still from new PPB video.
Watch it below.

The Portland Police Bureau has a long history of working with the community to catch bike thieves and educate folks about how to prevent bikes from being stolen in the first place. Today, with summer cycling season in full swing, they’ve released a video and a statement about bike theft prevention and recovery. The main focus of their message: Know your serial number.

“The Division has hundreds of unclaimed bikes, due to owners not knowing their serial numbers,” reads their statement, “Only 34% of bike theft victims knew their bike’s serial number last year – making it harder for police to identify the bike recovered.”

The video features PPB Evidence Control Specialist Rob Sibayan who gives us a tour of their massive bike storage warehouse. Sibayan says there are over 500 bikes currently being stored in the evidence room, a mix of bikes that have been stolen, found, used in crimes, or that belong to people currently being held in jail. The video also shares some excellent advice about how to recover your bike if it gets stolen. Watch it below…

And here are some bike theft stats shared by the PPB today:

  • Portland had a total of 2,050 reported incidents of bike theft in 2012. This was 305 fewer reports than 2011 (-13%).
  • The top three neighborhoods where bikes were stolen were: Downtown, Northwest and the Pearl District (all in Central Precinct’s area).
  • The next top neighborhoods included: Sunnyside, Hosford-Abernethy; Sellwood-Moreland, Lents, Concordia, Hazelwood and Richmond.
  • Saturday was the most popular day of the week for thefts citywide and Wednesday was for the Downtown area.
  • Trek was the most stolen brand; Specialized, Schwinn and Cannondale came in next.
  • The value of bikes stolen ranged from $3,000 to $400; the highest number of bikes were in the $500 range.

And some helpful tips everyone should remember:

  • Use U-Locks! Most stolen bikes reported having a cable lock that was broken and left at the scene; very few bikes using U-locks were reported stolen.
  • Individuals living in secure residential apartments should not leave their bikes outside their rooms in the hallways or unlocked in the basement. Either lock it with a U-lock in the basement or keep it inside your personal apartment. Additionally, do not assume your secured business area is secure either – always lock your bike.
  • Consider double locking, especially in areas where bike theft is common.
  • Take a photo of your bike – if stolen, you can post the specific information and photo on

If your bike gets stolen, file a police report online. If you have your serial number and want to check if the Police have your bike, call the Property Evidence Division at (503) 823-2179 (or the non-emergency line, 823-3333, will also get you through).

Keep an eye on your bike and don’t take any chances! Bike thieves are crafty and they can strike when and where you’d least expect them.

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