OT - Bike Recovered

Igor Roshchin str at komkon.org
Sat Jul 10 15:08:51 EDT 2010


John,

I am happy to hear your happy story.

What bothers me, however, is that the police officer who was clearly
convinced that it was your stolen bik, didn't actually check the 
rest of the bikes against the database of the stolen bikes (unless
that was a bluff on his part).

Igor

Sat Jul 10 13:08:39 CDT 2010
John Celio wrote:

A happy ending to my stolen bike saga!

When I reported my bike stolen, the police and others suggested checking out 
the local weekly swap meet.  This morning, a friend picked me up early and 
we headed over there.  By mistake we ended up missing the parking lot 
turn-off and parked in the swap meet area.  By pure luck, we parked two rows 
down from a big van that was FULL of bikes, and by even more luck my bike 
was one of the two dozen he had pulled out and set up in his stall.

Now, as I mentioned in the original thread, I had never written down the 
serial number of my bike, so I couldn't just go claim it.  I called the 
police, who showed up and said that if I could identify it as the same one 
from the description in my police report, they could probably convince the 
seller to turn it over.

The seller was in no mood to cooperate and was very argumentative with me as 
I explained every mark and scratch on the bike.  He had stripped off almost 
all the accessories I'd put on it, but there were clear distinguishing marks 
that I had described on the police report that were still evident. 
Eventually one officer pulled him aside, and after a few minutes the officer 
came back and told me to take the bike, it was mine.  He later told me he 
had asked the seller for his business license or tax info, neither of which 
he had.  When the officer said he would be forced to run a check on all the 
serial numbers on all the bikes in his van for stolen property, the seller 
quickly said he'd let me take the bike if we'd leave, and that was that!

I wish I'd been smart and written down the serial number, because then the 
seller might actually be facing criminal charges.  Who knows how many stolen 
bikes he's fenced for thieves?  I've resolved to keep a record of every 
serial number of every item of value that I have, starting with my bike and 
camera equipment, so that the next time this happens I will be better 
prepared.  Live and learn!

Thanks for reading,
John




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