Bike thefts in Whitewater cause frustration

March 1, 2016

Imagine enjoying a movie with your girlfriend on a Sunday morning, and your roommate bursts into the house asking if you had brought your bike inside for the winter.

This is the exact situation I found myself in last weekend.

Column by  Justin St. Peter  Sports Editor
Column by
Justin St. Peter
Sports Editor

Confused, I said no. In response, he informed me that both my bike and his were gone from the garage. Within about five seconds, I was charging out the door leading to the garage to find that he was right. Our bikes were no longer parked in their usual spots against the wall.

Five minutes later, we were driving around the neighborhood before heading to the Whitewater Police Station to file a report. After talking to the police officer, I realized all I knew about my bike was that it was from Walmart, how much it cost and that it had a black frame with red stripes on it. My roommate had a much better description, but then the officer asked us the million-dollar question: do you have the serial number for your bikes?

Unless you have had something stolen from you before, you wouldn’t even think of recording the serial number of something you own. Because we both hadn’t, our chances of having our bikes found went down exponentially.

My heart dropped at that moment because I knew that between the two of us, we had most likely lost about $500 worth of property, with my roommate taking the much more significant financial hit.

After coming home, we realized the thieves didn’t even touch a few sets of golf clubs that were much more expensive and were positioned directly next to where the bikes had been parked. We realized that our door from our garage leading into our house had been unlocked as well, so I suppose we were lucky that we hadn’t had anything else stolen.

The most frustrating part of the experience is that our garage door has been broken since early last November. The only way to close it is to manually shut it, which is a big inconvenience and difficult to do.  Our landlord has looked at it a few times, but hasn’t fixed it. Every once in a while, it decides to close for a few days before it returns to being a piece of crap (I really wish I could swear here).

I guess the lesson in all of this is to make sure the garage door is actually shut at all times, and have the serial numbers for everything that is somewhat important in your life. Pay attention to your surroundings and know exactly what your possessions look like.

To the thief or thieves, if it was a drunk prank or just some joke, which the police officer suggested it could be, nobody is laughing. Return the bikes and end this mess.

Whitewater is a close-knit community, and we live far enough away from campus that we naively thought our stuff was safe. I guess, thanks for teaching us this lesson, but have fun attempting to take off the bike lock from my handlebars. Congrats on being able to sell them for maybe $40. Or maybe you will use them regularly, congrats as well. You can definitely find a functioning bike for about $20 on Craigslist or some similar site.

Bike thievery is a very pointless crime if you think about it. You sir, or ma’am, are a stupid criminal.

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