“Average” year for bike thefts, but dozens unreported

By Hannah Zeeb

The new school year brought new students, new chefs and new thefts to Macalester. According to Terry Gorman, Director of Safety and Security, at least ten to twelve bikes have been reported as stolen. The number of bike thefts this year is “average,” according to Gorman. Nevertheless, other evidence points to a much larger number of stolen bikes that go unreported each year. In a recent survey conducted by The Mac Weekly, 68 community members reported over 70 bikes as stolen or almost stolen. A small number of these did not occur this semester, but the survey shows the issue is larger than just those reported to security. Many students feel that reporting a theft is useless because bikes are usually sold as parts or repainted. Neither Ilana Fogleson ’14 nor her housemate Daniel Clinton-McCausland, a student at the University of Minnesota, reported the thefts of their bikes. The thefts occurred two weeks ago and in both cases they were unlocked on their enclosed porch. “It was not really visible from the front and there were three other unlocked bikes leaning on the tree outside,” she said. None of those bikes on the trees were taken. While Fogleson is worried about the cost of the bike, she is grateful for the thief’s manners. “[They] left one in exchange… which I guess is a nice gesture,” she said. Danielle Kleiner-Kanter’s ’14 bike was stolen three weeks ago off campus near SuperAmerica. She had locked the bike with a spiral lock. Kleiner-Kanter now locks her new bike with a U-type lock. “It will not be stolen again,” she said. Many bikes are stolen while unlocked, even if hidden from view. Alvin Kim ’14 also had his bike stolen three weeks ago from his off campus house. He did not lock it, but he was surprised because the culprit stole it from his backyard. Like the others he did not report it. Gorman has no way to know the precise time when the thefts are occurring, making it near impossible to find the culprits after a bike is stolen. He suggested students utilize some basic precautions to keep their bikes safe including using a U-lock, locking bikes in secure locations and locking around both the front wheel and the frame. He also suggests reporting suspicious behavior to campus security. refresh –>