Kelowna RCMP have deployed a new tactic to tackle bike thievery in the city.
The RCMP have started leaving—and surveilling—what they refer to as “bait bikes” around the city in an attempt to apprehend those who try to steal them.
On June 13, a bait bike was stolen within 90 minutes of it being deployed outside a Kelowna business. RCMP traced the bait bike to a nearby residential property. A search warrant was obtained and executed by the Target Team of the Kelowna RCMP Street Enforcement Unit, which resulted in the recovery of the outstanding bait bike, a suspected stolen bike and a confirmed stolen bike, which had been reportedly taken in late May.
On the same day, a second deployed bait bike was allegedly taken by a suspect, who police caught riding in the area of Highway 97 and Highway 33. That suspect faces potential criminal charges. He was identified by police and later released on conditions, expected to appear in court at a later date.
“Theft of bicycles in our community continues to be a concern, and the RCMP will continue to target those responsible for committing these crimes,” states Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey, spokesman for the Kelowna RCMP. “The Kelowna RCMP will continue to target bike thieves through this initiative and other enforcement tactics. Specifics about the bait bike, where it was or will be deployed and other details will not be released.”
RCMP also remind bike-owners to record their bicycle’s serial number in case of theft. Without a serial number on record chances of recovering a bike and having it returned are low.
To register your bike with Project 529, visit the City of Kelowna Website.