A West End resident asked me to post the following message with the hopes of building community awareness on recent thefts that have occurred:
I am a big fan of your blog and follow it closely. I believe you may have touched on this topic in the past: bike theft (and theft of other property).
I would like to tell you our story. Over the past year, we have had multiple items stolen from us on Indiana Avenue. What transpired this past Wednesday afternoon takes the cake and has prompted us to try to spread the word far and wide, through social media channels, neighbors, etc. It seems as if things have rapidly gone downhill in our part of the West End as it would pertain to property theft.
On Wednesday, August 26, sometime between 6PM and 7PM, our 2+ year old daughter’s bicycle was stolen from the Indiana Beach entrance. They also took her helmet, and even her shoes!! The poor girl had to be carried home screaming.
Previous to that, during the Spring and over a 1 month period, we had the following items taken from the side of our home on Indiana Ave, north of Beech Street:
- A children’s scooter
- A children’s push Car, kind of a little race car with a trunk and a horn with a handle attached to the back
- One of those fluorescent green with flag “child at play” standees
Finally, last week, a friend’s Cannondale Mountain Bike was also taken from the side of our house (very distinct: blue with yellow handgrips).
No, nothing was locked up, and of course should have been. Yes, we should have probably called the authorities and reported it all, but did not.
Be that as it may, the bottom-line here is that we have a THIEF in our midst (or a group of them). We want to start tracking this activity so that we can build local awareness, and hopefully bring those responsible to justice. Or at the very minimum, so that others can prevent this from happening to them.
I know bike/property theft has always been there to some degree, but this has never happened to us in our 10 years living in the West End, and it is now a regular occurrence. Something has clearly changed in the past year or so.
There are some local rumors that this has been happening around the neighborhood and it just really sucks feeling like you are mark and being preyed upon. Suffice it to say we have invested in a bunch of locks and will be using them moving forward. Also considering home surveillance at this point.
If you feel it appropriate, we would greatly appreciate help in raising awareness. It may very well be a troubled local person with an easy means of converting this property into cash. Maybe they can be found out and helped. I’m sure there would be plenty of “you should have locked it up” comments, but in the end, it would be great if other West End residents would come forward if in fact they too have been victimized, which is our ultimate goal.
Broader community awareness and vigilance may help solve this problem, as it did when somebody had been breaking into houses in the West End a few years ago.
We want to go back to being a neighborhood where property theft is a rarity, rather than a regular occurrence. At the very least, use our story as a cautionary tale, and make sure to always lock up your stuff!
You can even feel free to give out the following email if anybody wants to contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org (unless your experience suggest that this is a bad idea).
Thanks so much and regards,