Eugene Police crack down on bike thefts with Bait Bike program
EUGENE, Ore- If you live in Eugene, chances are that you or someone you know has had a bike stolen.
Eugene has one of the highest rates of bike thefts in Oregon.
"Eugene has a real bike theft issue," said Sargent Wayne Dorman with the Eugene Police Department. "It's something we've been combating for quite some time seems like anecdotally it's getting worse as opposed to getting better."
David Sweeney, manager at "Play it Again Sports," is quite familiar with Eugene's bike theft issue.
"In the last year or so, I probably lost about $5,000 worth," said Sweeney. "I've had at least two bikes that were over $600 stolen, I've had my glass window that was broken included into that. I've had several bike trailers worth about $300 stolen, and then I had one $1,200 bike."
Now, Eugene Police are bringing back the Bait Bike program to crack down on thieves.
"The bikes that we use look like any other bike that you may see on the bike rack somewhere," said Sgt. Dorman. "We've equipped the bike with the ability to track it remotely and so once it starts moving we're able to follow that on a map and quickly find our bike and figure out who's riding it that shouldn't be."
Police had Bait Bikes on display last week and made two arrests in three hours. That's good news to anyone who's been a victim of bike theft.
Dorman is sending out a message to thieves saying, "any bike you see could potentially be one of our bait bikes."
Eugene Police have been conducting Bait Bike operations in the downtown area and will continue the program throughout the summer .