Police seek SE London youth photographed riding stolen £2k bike

Bike was one of three stolen last week from GB age group duathlete

by Simon_MacMichael   May 13, 2014  

Stolen bike Hither Green 1

Police in South East London are appealing for help in tracing three bikes stolen from Lee Park, SE3 last week – with a youth photographed riding one of them in Hither Green at the weekend.

The 69-year-old victim, a Great Britain age group athlete, was due to use one of the bikes, at the World Duathlon Championships in Spain later this month.

The bikes had been locked in a shed in the owner’s garden at 5pm last Thursday 8 May, and at 8.30am the following morning he discovered the door was open and the bikes no longer there.

Last Sunday, the owner of a bike shop in Lee Green told police he had seen a youth riding one of the stolen bikes, a Swiss triathlon frame with deep section Zipp wheels, in Hither Green. Details of the other two bikes were not supplied.

A witness, Kate Curran, who belongs to same triathlon club as the victim, took photographs which have been widely retweeted on Twitter with the hashtag #findvernonsbike.

Detective Constable Louise Mayhook from Lewisham police's Serious Acquisitive Crime Unit said: "These bikes are worth approximately £6,000, with each bike worth close to £2,000.

“The victim was to use one of them to compete in the world duathlon championships for Great Britain on 31 May in Spain.

“We are keen to trace the person in the image who is believed to have been riding around on the stolen bike last Sunday," she added.

Anyone who has information is asked to contact Lewisham's Serious Acquisitive Crime Unit on 020 8284 8477 or via 101, or the charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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59 user comments

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Yes I know exactly what type of bike it is - the only bike I've never popped out on when "inappropriately" dressed was my Motor Paced bike which was never ridden except behind a motorbike on a track!

Shay

posted by shay cycles [220 posts]
13th May 2014 - 13:52

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"And why did the stupid owner store his bikes in a garden shed? Numptee."

This is such a dumb (and needlessly abrasive) comment. Not everybody has a garage, for starters (especially in London), or space inside their house for a bike or three. Sheds are fine for storing bikes anyway -- certainly the bike insurance I have is quite happy for you to store your bike in a shed.

posted by adrianoconnor [41 posts]
13th May 2014 - 14:11

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Little scroat is down my way, shall have to keep my eyes peeled.

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posted by Evo Lucas [8 posts]
13th May 2014 - 14:47

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'Err, you realise that's a TT bike yeah? Why on earth would anyone pop out in a TT bike dressed like that?'

I've nipped down to the shops on my TT bike before in jeans etc. What's the problem?

posted by andyp [860 posts]
13th May 2014 - 15:30

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Evo Lucas wrote:
Little scroat is down my way, shall have to keep my eyes peeled.

On my commute also

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [2172 posts]
13th May 2014 - 15:49

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I hope he slips on those pedals, resulting in testicles introduced to cross bar with tremendous eye popping velocity. Sterilization, its the only way to save out future nation.

'It's the closest you can get to flying'
Robin Williams response when asked why he enjoyed riding so much

posted by Simmo72 [283 posts]
13th May 2014 - 16:06

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Clear image of the yobs face an his Wigans like sideburns, so why haven't the police found him through their database. He was presumably one of the London Riot scum

posted by auldain [4 posts]
13th May 2014 - 17:08

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auldain wrote:
Clear image of the yobs face an his Wigans like sideburns, so why haven't the police found him through their database. He was presumably one of the London Riot scum

Good question. Having photos is one thing. What you also need is an identity for the photo. A name, or an address, or a vehicle associated with, or a location associated with.

The police do spend a lot of time attaching snippets of info to other snippets of info but even then being definitive about anything is tricky. 5 minutes after this photo he could have a different jacket and the sideburns could go anytime. Even pictures of the same person a month apart can be quite different.

You could give the cops the powers to have a lot more photos and addresses on file via ID cards and use a lot more face recognition software on CCTV cams and do more stopping and searching. In California if you are stopped on the street in certain circumstances the cops will take a snap to go with your ID.

Can't see much appetite for it here though.

Cycling is like a church - many attend, but few understand.

posted by oozaveared [559 posts]
13th May 2014 - 17:19

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georgee wrote:
Even if the filthy chav gets knicked he'll just claim he bought it off some scrag head in a pub for £20 and be let free.

Or found it just round the corner. That way he doesn't have to name a pub or anyone else and he doesn't have to justify why he thought £20 was a fair price.

To be done for theft of the bike the lad would have to be in posession of it. The police would have to show that it was him that stole it. ie place him at the the point of theft, such as forensics, DNA a fingerprint etc. These kind of folk know that and just pass stuff around so even if there is a description and they were two dumb to wear their socks as gloves when they go thieving they aren't the one in posession for very long at all.

Chances are zero.

They could take the bike off him and that's about it these days.

Cycling is like a church - many attend, but few understand.

posted by oozaveared [559 posts]
13th May 2014 - 17:29

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When he gets a puncture he will seek assistance from a bike shop to change his tubs, not very bright you see!!
This foto and description of bike should be circulated to all LBS

Chadders x

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posted by chadders [73 posts]
13th May 2014 - 18:23

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Jez Ash wrote:
Scoob_84 wrote:
... a fat middle ages Asian fella wearing baggy sweaters ...

Emperor Chengzu of the Ming Dynasty, perhaps?

Up to his old tricks again I see...

posted by Quince [127 posts]
13th May 2014 - 18:59

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2k? More like 6k just for that bike, surely? The Zipps get nearly to 2k on their own. Probably Mrs Plod couldn't fathom that a single bike could be worth that much, and divided the value of that bike by the 3 bikes stolen...

posted by clayfit [24 posts]
13th May 2014 - 21:11

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The story was in the Evening Standard today as well, along with the photo too. The bloke would have to be exceptionally dim not to have realised he's been photographed and that the pic has been widely viewed on the Internet and also in London's mass circulation newspaper. I bet the bike's been dumped by now so that when he gets the knock on the door he'll say, "Oh no, it wasn't me officer."

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [2172 posts]
13th May 2014 - 21:47

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Surly if you have a bike costing that much wouldent it be safer leaving it in the house than a Shed? The bloke who took the bike someone will know him good photo of him.

A.Edwards

posted by Annabella [7 posts]
13th May 2014 - 22:08

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"I remember seeing a fat middle ages Asian fella wearing baggy sweaters amongst other things riding around on a pavement on bike with Zipp wheels near kings cross about a year ago. Alarm bells were ringing when i saw this, but i didn't really know what to do."

.... Ever so slightly ageist, but never mind ... the lesson here sounds to be, if you see anyone that looks or sounds a bit foreign riding around on a pretty decent bike*, better be safe rather than sorry, and perform a citizens arrest ...
but, of course, if he's wearing a rucksack, forget the bike, he's a suicide bomber ..........

p.s. Was your fat middle aged Asian friend just wearing baggy sweaters or were his bits adequately covered up ?

* Not a Raleigh apparently - they never get stolen, a bit like little Fiats ...

posted by simon.thornton [13 posts]
13th May 2014 - 22:20

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shay cycles wrote:
Am I the only one who has occasionally ridden a racing bike wearing trainers, jeans and a coat? I've done that quite a few times over the years and don't expect to attract attention because I'm not dressed "approriately".

The thing that would ring alarm bells in this case is not what the young man is wearing but the fact that the bike is far too small for him (then again I've ridden other people's bikes that were far too small for me in the past and without "apprpriate clothing").

I hope the bike gets returned and I hope the people involved in nicking it or passing it on are caught but I do wish people knees didn't jerk so much when triggered by prejudices.

Seriously, are you for bloody real!?

Stop being so bloody PC and apply a little common sense!

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posted by chrisp1973 [57 posts]
13th May 2014 - 22:30

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Looks a little small for him, he needs a 58.


Leviathan of Riderstate

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posted by bikeboy76 [1239 posts]
13th May 2014 - 23:25

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Yes I am for real.

No I don't swear on the Internet.

No I'm not being PC.

And common sense says that people shouldn't jump to conclusions based on stereotypes.

I've experienced being stopped by police on occasions because of my appearance (I had long hair) and because of the people I was with (they were Afro Caribbean) and I've been followed around shopping centres by security guards for the same reasons. Those reasons amounted to nothing less than prejudices.

In the case in point the guy was far too big for the bike and if unable to ride it properly and if at the time you knew the bike was stolen then common sense would lead you to suspect him. Common sense not prejudice about appearances.

Shay

posted by shay cycles [220 posts]
14th May 2014 - 0:18

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olic wrote:
Err, you realise that's a TT bike yeah? Why on earth would anyone pop out in a TT bike dressed like that? If that's not ringing alarm bells to you then, well..

In the middle of a bit of fettling perhaps?

If you cant do that in layers and/or very "un-aero" clothes after you've been banished from the warmth of the kitchen then quite a lot of us are knackered.

posted by farrell [1395 posts]
14th May 2014 - 2:17

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shay cycles wrote:

I've experienced being stopped by police on occasions because of my appearance (I had long hair) and because of the people I was with (they were Afro Caribbean) and I've been followed around shopping centres by security guards for the same reasons. Those reasons amounted to nothing less than prejudices.

Me and the missus went into a large, two storey sports store recently. She wanted to look for something upstairs, I wanted to look at something downstairs, so we split up, me telling her I'd come up and find her as soon as I'd looked at what I wanted to. When I got to her ten minutes later, she was furious, as the shop radios, turned up to full blast had gone mad talking about us and staff had suddenly appeared near her as she'd got to the top of the stairs. We're both middle aged and fairly well off and were particularly well dressed that day. What I'm saying is, it doesn't matter what you look like for people to have misconceptions about you.

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posted by carlosjenno [37 posts]
14th May 2014 - 5:27

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carlosjenno wrote:
shay cycles wrote:

I've experienced being stopped by police on occasions because of my appearance (I had long hair) and because of the people I was with (they were Afro Caribbean) and I've been followed around shopping centres by security guards for the same reasons. Those reasons amounted to nothing less than prejudices.

Me and the missus went into a large, two storey sports store recently. She wanted to look for something upstairs, I wanted to look at something downstairs, so we split up, me telling her I'd come up and find her as soon as I'd looked at what I wanted to. When I got to her ten minutes later, she was furious, as the shop radios, turned up to full blast had gone mad talking about us and staff had suddenly appeared near her as she'd got to the top of the stairs. We're both middle aged and fairly well off and were particularly well dressed that day. What I'm saying is, it doesn't matter what you look like for people to have misconceptions about you.

Judging by your piccie I don't blame the staff Wink

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posted by FATBEGGARONABIKE [583 posts]
14th May 2014 - 8:48

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I am never going to the shops on my racing bike with normal everyday clothing now just in case someone informs the rozzers.

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posted by Rupert [83 posts]
14th May 2014 - 10:05

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On my experience I wouldn't hold out much hope. Had my bike nicked from Preston Station. There were fantastic CCTV images of the thief (& his Staffie Bull Terrier!) but it took B.T.Police a month to print off a still image from the footage to pass on to Lancs Constabulary! Needless to say, 2 years later still not got my bike back!

posted by Preston Pedaller [2 posts]
14th May 2014 - 10:13

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If I could get that bike with those wheels for £2000, I'd buy it today...

posted by jameshaworth21 [11 posts]
14th May 2014 - 11:03

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With Di2 systems becoming more popular, I'm sure a kill switch is not to far away Smile

I've had four bikes stollen:

1) when I was 15, I popped into my aunts to give her a message, not more than 3 minutes. No lock...gone.
2) older and working at a car factory, locked it to a fire escape, right next to office windows. Lock cut, bike gone.
3) one of the first suspension mountain bikes. The garage was bashed in to steal it when I was on a day trip.
4) locked in London next to a security guard hut in in a multi storey car park in E1. When I asked the guard he said he thought it was the owners bike (they had to use cutting equipment to do it)

None ever recovered.

posted by ronin [127 posts]
14th May 2014 - 12:10

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Saying that the guy shouldn't have stored his bikes in a shed is exactly the sort of victim blaming that we object to when drivers say cyclists should wear high-vis or should use cycle lanes or whatever. It has no place here. In a perfect society I'd be able to leave my bike outside the front of my house unlocked and no-one would touch it, simply because it isn't theirs.

I must agree though that if Her Majesty's Plod can't find this guy then they really need to take a good hard look at themselves.

Boardman CX Team '14 | Cannondale CAAD8 '12 (written off, SMIDSY) | Scott Sportster '08

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posted by Gizmo_ [814 posts]
14th May 2014 - 12:27

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Annabella wrote:
Surly if you have a bike costing that much wouldent it be safer leaving it in the house than a Shed? The bloke who took the bike someone will know him good photo of him.

[[[[[[ "Someone will know him"? Well with all the media circulation of that photo, I imagine 20 people will know him, unless he's a hermit. But how many will bother to name him to the fuzz?
P.R.

PhilRuss

posted by PhilRuss [276 posts]
14th May 2014 - 16:55

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jameshaworth21 wrote:
If I could get that bike with those wheels for £2000, I'd buy it today...

I think the original owner is in a bind. He can't let his wife know how much it actually cost or there would be trouble.

Levity aside, this is bad. I have heard of decent spec bikes being targeted and stolen. This can only mean one thing though: some people are willing to buy the kit knowing what it is and knowing that it's probably stolen. That is shameful.

posted by SteppenHerring [178 posts]
15th May 2014 - 0:12

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After having three bikes stolen over the years, I now keep one in the dining area at the end of the kitchen and two in the living room; and one behind my desk when I'm at work. I'd much rather lose a little bit of space and have to 'live around them' than have any more stolen. It's all about what's most important.

posted by purplemadwoman [17 posts]
15th May 2014 - 13:52

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posted by Simon_MacMichael [8008 posts]
15th May 2014 - 15:28

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