A 37-year-old man faces numerous charges after allegedly stealing one of several bikes in the city that police are using to catch thieves.

At about 8:00 p.m. on October 15th, officers in the downtown core set up two bait bikes – one was locked on Pender Street, and the other was locked on Dunsmuir. Within the hour, officers saw someone beginning to show interest in the Dunsmuir bike. After waiting a few more minutes, the man walked up to the bike and had the lock removed in about 10 seconds. He pulled it from the rack, and began riding away.

Police quickly caught up with him and he was arrested for theft and mischief.

Everyone is familiar with “Bait Car” programs in several cities, but Vancouver Police has also had a “Bait Bike” program in existence for many years. While numerous bike thieves have been caught as a result of this initiative and other enforcement, there are still over 2000 bicycles stolen in Vancouver every year.

Police also recover over 1000 bikes annually that cannot be reunited with their owners, as their serial numbers have not been reported to police and that makes them untraceable.

“The VPD will continue to operate the Bait Bike program to try and reduce theft,” says Constable Brian Montague. “We want to diminish the risk of having someone’s bike stolen, and remind potential thieves that the next bike they are thinking of stealing may belong to the police.”

Everyone is encouraged to record the serial numbers of their bikes and other property so that it can be easily and quickly returned if recovered by police. For more information on how to reduce your risks and help police return your bike if it’s stolen, please visit our Log It or Lose It webpage.