SANDPOINT — Residents who have lost bikes in a recent wave of thefts have a hope of being reunited with their trusty two-wheeler.
In a pair of raids this week, police have recovered several thousand dollars worth of bikes and bike parts, which join the stolen goods turned in or recovered over the past months. Individuals who have lost bicycles should contact the police department with details about their stolen property to see if the description matches any recovered items.
“We want to get these back to their original owners,” interim Sandpoint Police Chief Corey Coon said. “It’s a lot better than selling them off.”
The first successful raid occurred early this week when the owner of a storage unit consented to have his property searched by police. The resulting search uncovered between $3,000 and $4,000 in stolen bikes, according to Coon. The owner was also implicated in the crime.
A second raid followed up on Thursday. This time, police used a search warrant to investigate a trailer house. This time, officers turned up about $2,500 in stolen bikes and bike parts. The raids also resulted in three arrests — two for possession of methamphetamine and one for an outstanding felony warrant. One of the arrested individuals admitted to stealing the bikes and selling parts to pay his rent.
The raids flushed the police department’s storage with an influx of recovered bicycles. These bikes joined those recovered, turned in or abandoned over previous months.
“We’ve had a lot of stolen bikes just get turned in recently,” Coon said.
The storehouse now contains more than 50 bikes, many of which no doubt have original owners who would like them back. To investigate whether or not your bike has been recovered, give the police department a call or drop by for a visit. A photo of the bike or any other proof of ownership is ideal. However, it’s not necessary.
“If you can give us a really good matching description of the bike, that should be enough,” Coon said.
As one might expect, bike theft tends to ramp up in the summer months. Coon said that if it should happen to you, it’s very important to file a police report. While many don’t think it’s worth their or the police department’s time and effort — especially if the bike isn’t especially valuable — it is a key step in increasing the chances of recovery.