Twenty-five bicycles were reported stolen in the last two weeks, representing a 50 percent increase from the previous two weeks.
Since May 1, 144 reports of bike thefts have been filed with the Provo Police Department.
“While bicycle thefts may seem to be an insignificant crime in the grand scheme of things, these thefts have an adverse impact on the victim’s quality of life,” said Chief Rick Gregory in a news release.
Lora Grady, an elementary education major from California, recently had her bike stolen from the parking lot of her apartment in Provo. Usually Lora and her husband, Dan, lock their bikes when they leave but didn’t in this instance because they were only leaving for a couple of hours.
“It made me sad,” said Grady. “I should have locked it up. It was only unlocked for three hours, but in that time it was stolen. I felt violated.”
Grady said that since they hadn’t registered their bike, they didn’t bother reporting it as stolen.
The police department offers individuals the opportunities to register their bike with the city. When a bike is registered by the police department, it is tagged with an additional serial number unique to Provo that allows authorities to recognize and return bikes that have been lost or stolen.
Free bike registration will be available to residents during the police department’s annual National Night Out Against Crime on August 7. Throughout the remainder of the year, bike registration costs one dollar.
To prevent and minimize theft, the police department encourages all bike owners to always lock bikes with a high-quality lock, to lock and close garage doors even when home, and be aware of and report suspicious activity.
“We have an aggressive, pro-active strategy aimed at apprehending the criminals responsible for these crimes; however we ask that residents follow these tips to make themselves a hard target,” Gregory said.
Matthew Henningson, a 23-year-old business management major from Arizona, said, “I ride my bike every day. If my bike were stolen, my time to get to and from campus would take an additional 20 minutes.”
Henningson said he always locks his bike with a U-Lock because they are nearly impossible to break. He tributes the fact that he has never had his bike stolen because he locks it every day.
Henningson has his bike registered with BYU, who requires that all bikes ridden and parked on campus be registered with a bike license.