Sunday, November 13 2011 @ 08:17 PM UTC
Contributed by: B' Spokes
Maryland Transit Authority Police are cracking down on a rash of bicycle thefts—a trend that began in June, according to Northern District commander Capt. Robert Rosendale.
Nine thefts were reported between the North Avenue and Hunt Valley Light Rail stops with suspects using the light rail to escape with stolen property. Two more thefts were reported in the Lutherville area last week, although it is unclear if the suspects fled via the light rail.
MTA Police used a decoy bike at the Lutherville light rail stop to make an arrest in early September. Police are now attempting to identify (by serial number) and photograph all bikes attached to racks at light rail stops. By identifying the bicycles’ locations, police can more easily track down the time of day that the bikes were taken by using each station’s closed captioned cameras, Rosendale said.
The hope is that by narrowing the time of day and the train used to transport the stolen property, police will have a better chance to catch bike thieves.
Rosendale advised members of the Lutherville Community Association, during the group’s October meeting:
* Buy a sturdy lock (“A $5 to $10 lock can be popped off just like that.”)
* Make sure you have your bike’s serial number written down somewhere.
Federal grants are available for additional cameras at light rail stops, although the Lutherville stop isn’t slated for another installation for at least another year-and-a-half, according to Rosendale. The typical cost for an installation ranges from $500,000 to $750,000, he said.