Updated - Happy bike theft story- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Evil Lurks
    Reputation: Davetoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004

    Updated - Happy bike theft story

    I have a cool update to share regarding the post below from the old passion forum.

    It turns out the thief has been stealing and selling bikes online for a few months, and last week he sold one to a sting operation in Boulder. He’s sitting in jail right now. I get to go pick him out of a lineup later this week. Sweet.

    If you're Boulder local and you've recently had a bike nabbed, drop me a line and I'll see what I can find out.

    "Happy Bike Theft Story"
    I bought a used race bike back before Christmas – I'd been keeping an eye on all the classifieds, ready to pounce on the cheapest, nicest thing I could find over the winter. And I found an advertisement on Craig's List, really liked the price and knew the bike was cool, so I bought it from a guy down in Boulder for way less than it was worth. It troubled me – despite the fact that the guy fit the bike, he seemed sketchy on a few different levels. I used cash, bought the bike, and was on my way.
    The bike was fantastic. Super fast – rides great, etc. But it ate away at me, stupid conscience, that someone, somewhere was missing it.

    So, after much debate, I decided to try to find out. It didn’t take much looking - sure enough, it was 100% stolen and listed in a database of stolen bikes that I found online(www.nationalbikeregistry.com). So I called the database, who put the owner in touch with me, and this is where it gets sketchy…

    At first, the original owner (college guy) didn’t really want it back. He was grateful to have found the bike, but he’d already made an insurance claim and was shopping for new bikes. So basically, his insurance claim (if discovered) was void and he’d have to give the money back. So he doesn't really want it back – I keep the bike, case closed, right?

    No indeed. I got some legal counsel from a friend, and because I reported the bike as "found" with the National Bike Registry, there was an official report - possibly available to police, insurance, etc. Which bring about all kinds of possibilities for insurance fraud, becoming someone's puppy in prison, etc.

    The original owner of the bike thought about it, and he decided in good conscience to take the situation to the Police. He’s really appreciative now – getting his original bike back, doing the right thing, etc. We might even go for a ride some time. He actually didn’t have enough money to buy a new bike anyway after paying the insurance deductible, so it’s good for him to go the legal route. I think he was just surprised at first by the revelation and it threw his plans off – he seems to have come to his senses now. (It’s his parents’ insurance too – I don’t think Daddy was too keen on the fraud idea.)

    As for me, I’m out 500$ unless the cops find this guy. Which is doubtful. Which makes me think hard about the choice I made - buying the bike might have been a mistake, but was I obliged to dig for the truth about its origin?

    My roommate, who bares questionable moral fiber, was blown away by the whole situation. He told me: if you dig up the past all you get is dirty.
    “You made the choice to start with,” he said when I was trying to decide if I should find out if the bike was stolen, “there’s no point in doing the right thing now.”

    I wholeheartedly disagree – and here’s where the happy, Christmas-like, New Years Resolution-esce part of the story comes in. It’s not often that life lets you make a mistake and then lingers around to give you the opportunity to man up about it and be honest and come clean. And while you can’t control the whole world, or even parts of the world, you CAN control little parts of the world for little windows of time. That’s Free Will, and outside of our personal sense of right and wrong, acting upon that sense is perhaps the only thing that makes us who we are. In whatever corner of the world I control, theft ain’t cool.

    Riding, on the other hand, is very cool - so I went for a night ride with Migz, IBMkidIII, and we stopped by ignazjr's place for a beer afterwards. Like everytime I ride with Miguel, I'm reminded that not everyone needs a race bike anyway(or even suspension) to be really, really fast. Things came into focus and I feel like I've gained a little perspective. I did the right thing.

  2. #2
    try driving your car less
    Reputation: jh_on_the_cape's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Davetoo
    [I]Things came into focus and I feel like I've gained a little perspective. I did the right thing.
    that's worth more than $500. hopefully the karma wheel will spin you something good in the future.

    I once found a nice new front wheel at the trailhead. someone must have left it there when putting the bike on the roofrack. the wheel was nice (king) and new and disc. just what i had been shopping for. i held it in my hand, the only person there. tempted. i rode to the trailhead, so i could just throw it in the woods and come back for it later with the car. finders-keepers, right?

    but then i decided against it. that karma would open the quickrelease and disfigure my face or something. so i leaned it against a tree, and decided that i would come back that night, and if it was still there i would take it home and try to find it's owner. and then, only then, would i keep it.
    well it was gone when i came back. i still dont know if the rightful owner claimed it, or someone simply nabbed it. but i feel good about what i did. but i still have not upgraded to a disc in the front! i have had alot of fortunate things happen to me in my life.
    it's wierd how insurance and money make people do wierd things, like justify theft.
    Only boring people get bored.

  3. #3
    DSR is offline
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    He fell in a lake?! Was this a bike race? Need more info on that turn of events.

    Karma is good, especially good karma. S

  4. #4
    Frequent Crasher
    Reputation: SuperBad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    I went to school in Boulder, way back in 1989 I had my first MTB stolen. It was an 1988 Spec. Rockhopper Comp, that was pretty badass for the time. I loved that bike, I worked hard to buy it, did my first NORBA race on it, finished DFL or 1 ahead of DFL in it. I wish I could find another, with Thumbies and all. I had a U-Lock on it, but the thieves actually broke the entire rack, to steal the bikes.... I hope whomever stole it got run over by a bus!
    (still pissed about it 15 years later)

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    good start to a cheap novel. Good luck.

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