Bike Thieves Beware: UCPD Has Got Your Number

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UCPD’s Crime Prevention Unit is handing out free bike lights to bicyclists peddling after dark.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. ( — GPS tracking technology has come in handy for UCR police, as they discourage bike thieves from targeting the campus.

A team made up of  UCPD Crime Prevention Unit, parking, and housing identified areas where there have been repeated bike thefts, and then locked bikes up equipped with tracking technology.  Since April, the bikes have been stolen 17 times, and police have arrested 16 people for grand theft, with 11 felony and two misdemeanor convictions so far. None of the suspects arrested have been affiliated with UC Riverside.

“Bike theft continues to account for the largest amount of property crime on the UC Riverside campus,” said UCR Police Chief Mike Lane. “Many in our campus community rely on their bike as an alternative form of transportation. We decided to do something to make their property a little safer.”

In addition to these theft prevention efforts, UCPD is partnering with the UC Riverside student group, “Healthy Hearts,” on a project called “Operation Light the Night.”  This program offers free bike lights and TAPS bike registration information to bicyclists. “The goal is to increase safety and visibility for nighttime riders,” said Lane. Healthy Hearts students participate in ride-alongs with UCPD officers to offer bicyclists a free light. During the Spring quarter, bicyclists received 70 bike lights and more are going out this year.

Keeping bicycles secure is an important priority for campus police.

Keeping bicycles secure is an important priority for campus police.

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