Campus bike theft doubled in last year

Some students prefer to bike to school, but with campus bike theft on the rise, they may choose to reconsider parking their bikes at places like the David O. McKay library. There has been a 460 percent increase in bike theft since 2009. JORDAN HINCKLEY | Scroll Photography

Bicycle theft on BYU-Idaho campus has doubled in the last year according to BYU-Idaho Security & Safety.

Garth Gunderson, Security & Safety Director for BYU-I said that, as of Nov. 9, there have been 14 bicycle thefts this year, up from seven thefts in 2011.

Gunderson said that this fall, there was a bicycle stolen almost every week on campus.

To report a stolen bike, a student needs to provide the make and serial number of the bike.

Bicycle permits help the police locate a stolen bike more quickly, because they can enter the bike’s information into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database.

According to the FBI’s website, www.fbi.gov, The NCIC has access to a database that contains more than 15 million active records about stolen property, missing persons and other criminal activities.

Among those files is information about stolen bikes.

When a police officer needs to know if a bicycle has been stolen, information such as a serial number or a license plate number is entered into the database to learn if it has been reported as stolen.

The system responds instantly, according to the FBI’s website.

Students can discourage bicycle theft by locking up bicycles when they’re not using them.

Gunderson said many students think that a lower crime rate in Rexburg means they can leave their doors unlocked.

In correlation to this, many students don’t lock their bikes up either.

“Our biggest problem with crime prevention is the false sense of security,” Gunderson said.

It is considered petty theft, which is a misdemeanor, to steal a bike. If the bike is worth more than $1,000 it is grand theft, which is a felony.

It’s important students realize this, Gunderson said, because many bikes on campus are valuable enough that stealing them would be considered grand theft.

The Safety & Security office is located in Kimball 150.

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