Getting Your Stolen Bike Back

GOOD: How long did it take you to find your stolen bike on the site?

Brown: It was stolen on Tuesday, and on Sunday I was walking back from the corner store and saw it on my phone on Craigslist. (I pretty much tried to only search for it on my phone, while walking around, so I wouldn’t just refresh Craigslist on my computer over and over.) I wasn’t sure it was mine at first; there were a few photos of it, and most were close-ups of the chain and tires and whatnot showing it was in good shape. Oddly, three of the four photos showed it with a kickstand, which my bike definitely didn’t have. But the fourth was taken in a different location, and it was extremely recognizable as mine. It was the same color, and the posting mentioned it was the same model (a Quick Six). Also I’d added three things to it after I bought it: a rear rack, a water bottle holder, and a little under-the-seat Velcro bag. The rack and water bottle were on it, and while the bag was missing, so was the rear reflector I’d had to remove to install it. It’s hard to imagine the odds of the same color, model and add-ons all showing up within a week of my bike being stolen.

Over at GOOD, Cord Jefferson talks to Christian Brown about how he found his stolen bike on Craigslist, and subsequently worked with the LAPD’s “Bike Detectives” to recover it from a bike flipper. Two years ago, author Jami Attenberg also had her bike stolen, and worked with the NYPD to recover her bike—her terrific story is here.

Photo: Flickr/Marco Gomes

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