Rockingham detectives last week put the call out for assistance with their investigation into a series of burglaries in Success, Myaree, Rockingham, Port Kennedy and Falcon between August 28 and September 23.
About 20 bikes worth $40,000 were reportedly stolen, but Lakes Bikes’ manager Joe Morriss said he had heard of more in Cannington and Southern River.
Mr Morriss’ Cockburn Central store was burgled in late August and again in early September. A bike worth about $7500 was also nabbed from the store during a burglary last year.
The State Government’s recently released Western Australian Mountain Bike Strategy described mountain biking as one of the world’s fastest-growing recreational and tourism activities, with close to 120,000 mountain bikes bought in WA every year and demand for tracks and trails exceeding supply.
Despite some bikes costing more than $10,000, Mr Morriss did not believe criminals were cashing in on the sport’s growing popularity by offloading them at reduced prices.
He said similar growth in sales and popularity of triathlon bikes around the $4000 price bracket and the fact these bikes were not being taken as well was evidence there was no link.
‘We don’t have people stealing triathlon bikes, even though the sports are relatively similar in popularity.
We could only speculate.’
Cockburn Police Station’s officer in charge, Sergeant Brett Reyne, believed it would be ‘drawing a long bow’ to say there was a link.
How to avoid buying a stolen bike:
– Compare price against other adverts to ensure it is not unusually low.
– Check the description is not copied and pasted from a website.
– Expect real pictures.
– Ask for frame number, which works like a registration plate.
– Check for stolen bikes in the area.
– Ask for ID, as bike thieves won’t want to give up this information.
– Ask for proof of purchase.
– Don’t meet them on street and never let them bring the bike to you.
– Take care buying online, particularly if seller has little or no feedback.