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SLC Police launch campaign to have people register bicycles

(Stock Photo)

SALT LAKE CITY – Hundreds of bicycles are stolen in Salt Lake City in an average year, and police say very few are ever returned.  The department is starting a new campaign which they hope will convince people to take the steps to register their bikes.

In 2017, there were roughly 11 hundred bikes that were taken in Salt Lake City.  Police say they currently have a lot of them sitting in evidence, and they’re not going anywhere any time soon.

“Right now, we have almost 240 bikes in our evidence and we haven’t been able to return them to their owners,” according to Sergeant Brandon Shearer.

Shearer says there is one main contributing factor as to why this is happening.

“People typically don’t have their serial number, and without that it makes it very difficult to prove who the owner of the bike was,” he says.

Simply knowing the make and model of the bike is not enough for investigators.  Some people inscribe their name on the bicycle, and Shearer says that is enough for them to determine ownership.  However, they need specific information before they can give a bike back.

He says, “Sadly, we’re able to return very few of those to the owners and the big reason is that people don’t have documentation of what their serial numbers are.”

Their “No Bike Left Behind” program is designed to teach citizens how they can register their property.  Shearer says officers will interact with the people they see, teaching them how they can register, which is free to do.

Even when a bike is worth thousands of dollars, Shearer says many owners overlook the need to register it.

“Some people may have a $100 to $200 bike, and that may be their only mode of transportation,” Shearer says.