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Bicycle Thefts are on the Rise Countywide

Over the past two months Marin County law enforcement agencies have taken several hundred bicycle theft reports. The Mill Valley Police Department alone has taken 34 reports on bicycle thefts. Data has shown that there are no patterns to these bicycle thefts as they are occurring day and night, at residences, businesses, and on public government owned property.

Thieves are believed to be looking for high priced bicycles that are in demand to make quick sales. Social distancing measures have led to an increase in the desire for safe outdoor recreational activities such as biking. It also helps that the county is filled with gorgeous picturesque trails available to riders. To combat this issue, MVPD officers monitor heavily victimized areas in attempts to deter thieves and/or catch them in the act. The Mill Valley Police Department would like to share tips to help prevent future bicycle thefts.

Bike Theft Prevention Tips:

  • Know your bike’s serial number and write it down.
  • Lock your bicycle when you are not around (even if it is on a car’s bicycle rack).
  • Never leave your bike unattended for an excessive amount of time.
  • Lock your bike to a fixed object in a visible area while in public.
  • At home store your bicycle in a locked garage or within another secured area.
  • Do not have your bicycle visible from the street for extended periods of time.
  • Use bicycle U-locks, which are harder to cut than wire locks.
  • Lock your bike frame and one wheel to the bike rack.
  • Always report the theft to the police as soon as possible.
  • See visual showing how to best lock your bicycle.

The Mill Valley Police Department also offers a bicycle registration program to help deter theft and to help law enforcement reunite bicycles with their owners. The best way to track a stolen bike or to identify the owner of a found bike, is through the bicycle’s serial number. However, most people do not have this information stored anywhere. Having your bicycle information on file will help us if your bicycle is ever stolen or lost.

The program is open to all Mill Valley residents. We encourage community members to register their bicycles as soon as possible, but registrations can be made at any time. Please register all bicycles that you own, including children’s bikes. If you purchase a new bicycle or get rid of an old bicycle, please notify our department of the change so that we can update our records.

There have been numerous success stories in which bicycles were returned to their rightful owners through utilization of our registry. Increase your chances of having your favorite two-wheeled recreational/transportation object returned if it’s ever lost or stolen by registering with us today. If you would like to participate in the program, download the bicycle registration form.

Remember if your bicycle is stolen, please report it. The only way we can help you recover your bicycle is to know that it’s gone!