As the first month of the new year comes to an end, Furman students have raised concerns of on-campus bike theft. According to the Furman University Police, more bikes have been stolen this semester than any other semesters. The campus usually reports an average of 7 bikes stolen per semester. Recently, campus has seen an increase in high-value bikes stolen, locked or not. Owners of high-value bikes, such as Treks and Canondales, have gone out to their bikes, only to find their locks cut and bike missing.
Furman Police Chief John Milby shared, “We have charged at least two people with larceny for stealing bikes from campus in the past few months. Neither of the people charged were affiliated with campus in any way."
Approximately 75% of bikes stolen were left unlocked by their owners and taken by other students wanting to borrow them to get across campus. Rarely were bikes stolen off campus grounds. Roughly 45% of bikes were recovered by the police after being reported missing; however, many of these reports came days or even weeks after the student noticed, which led to a lower likelihood of recovery. It is also harder to return the bikes to their proper owner due to students not registering their bikes online, therefore not providing officers the proper information.
“If we have the serial number, the bike will be placed in the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database, if it meets the criteria for entry,” said Chief Milby.
Chief Milby also provided some advice for students with bikes on campus, “Keep your bike locked, take it home during breaks, and if it is an expensive bike, consider keeping it indoors.”
If your bike has been stolen, contact the Furman University Police. If you see any activity that you may consider suspicious, report it as soon as possible. Lastly, register your name and number on the bike registration page, so they have access to important information in order to return your property.