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Bike thieves along Rio Hondo

Old 12-10-12, 07:48 PM
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Garfield Cat
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Bike thieves along Rio Hondo

You know, I get to read what happens to people along these roads and now it happens to me. Sunday I rode from Long Beach on the L.A. River Trail and then to the Rio Hondo Trail. I go as far as to the John Anson Ford Park which is in the City of Bell Gardens. The park is adjacent to the trail.

Two pedestrians going south, two teenagers, blocked my way and I stopped and then they demanded my bike. No response by me until the bigger teen pulls out a pocket knife. I get off the bike and then they want my money and my cell phone. I stalled and they wanted to get away with the bike but nothing else. This was at 1:14 pm. No other riders came by at that time. One teen rides the bike and the other follows, running into John Anson Ford park.

I get my cell phone out and call 911 and the dispatcher calls the City police. They came by pretty fast, two squad cars. One officer drives me back to the station and my wife comes to pick me up. Later that day at 5 pm I get a call from the same Officer and he has the bike and the two teens getting booked.

The Officer told me that these two teens went back to the Park and then to the Trail trying to sell the bike. Another rider looked at the Cervelo and then at the teens and called the Police on his cell. Booked on Grand Theft, Assault with a deadly weapond, possession of stolen goods.

I briefly examined the bike and the Garmin is gone.
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Old 12-10-12, 07:51 PM
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Old 12-10-12, 08:01 PM
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So sorry to read this. I hope they get convicted, and that you get your bike back ASAP.
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Old 12-10-12, 08:06 PM
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When they get convicted, sue them for the cost of the Garmin and incidental expenses. Kids don't have money? Sue their parents. Maybe small claims court?

disclaimer: I am not a lawyer. It's just what I would try to do.
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Old 12-10-12, 08:10 PM
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You'd generally find their parents (or parent) have no money either.
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Old 12-10-12, 08:21 PM
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The assault charge should be premeditated, and will potentially carry a sentence. I hope these ruffians learn their lesson from this. Thanks for sharing the story.
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Old 12-10-12, 10:18 PM
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Well, the nugget of goodness is that some other soul recognized what was going on and called the cops separately.

Sorry to hear about your garmin though. I hate thievery.
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Old 12-10-12, 10:45 PM
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Most likely you can get your money back for the Garmin with restitution. Talk to the DA handling the case. If they tack it on, payment is a condition of their probation once released, not an option.
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Old 12-10-12, 10:58 PM
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Pretty sad that something terrible has to happen to a good guy like you GC! But it does how just how stupid these idiots can be and it got them caught. I'm sure the parents aren't any smarter or of a better class.

You know, I see idiots doing stupid crap and I can't say how many times I felt like going back with a baseball bat to beat the F#@$ out of them just for being stupid. You know, hang around at dark, covered so they don't know who or what the F hit them. Who knows, one of these day if they happen to hurt the wrong person, just don't tell on me.
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Old 12-10-12, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
Pretty sad that something terrible has to happen to a good guy like you GC! But it does how just how stupid these idiots can be and it got them caught. I'm sure the parents aren't any smarter or of a better class.

You know, I see idiots doing stupid crap and I can't say how many times I felt like going back with a baseball bat to beat the F#@$ out of them just for being stupid. You know, hang around at dark, covered so they don't know who or what the F hit them. Who knows, one of these day if they happen to hurt the wrong person, just don't tell on me.
No. Vigilante justice is definitely not the way to go.
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Old 12-10-12, 11:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Ekdog View Post
No. Vigilante justice is definitely not the way to go.
I know! Not worth it but if it happens, you never heard my name.
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Old 12-11-12, 12:30 AM
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But but but, I was told that Los Angeles County is very safe!

The assault charge should be premeditated, and will potentially carry a sentence.
I wouldn't bet on it. If this is their first offense, the assault charge will be dropped as unsubstantiated (no blood was spilled and no one except the victim saw the knife), the rest will be reduced to misdemeanor, they'll be treated as juveniles and they'll get probation and community service.
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Old 12-11-12, 12:37 AM
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Was it right next to the park? I stop in that park all the time to refill water bottles - there's usually a TON of people in there.
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Old 12-11-12, 08:39 AM
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Yes, next to the park but north of the entrance to Rio Hondo. Maybe 100 yards north.
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Old 12-11-12, 09:37 AM
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i was on that trail saturday and stopped at that same park i think. Not the best area by any means but thats not an excuse for getting ripped off. didnt have any issues but i was with a group most of the time. personally i see nothing wrong vigillantee justice, and if someone pulls a weapon on you, you have a lawful right to defend yourself.
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Old 12-11-12, 10:12 AM
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After the bike jackings last year on SART, I have started carrying pepper spray and have a huge knife hanging from my backpack. I want anyone approaching me from the front to know, taking my bike is not going to be that easy. I am not suggesting this for everyone. You have to ask yourself, "Do I have the courage to fight back and not be a victim? If you answer to this is yes, then you need to be prepared. Pepper spray is a good option for self defense. It's non lethal and cheap. You can purchase it at any Big5 sporting good store. It's consealable and easy to deploy.
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Old 12-11-12, 10:22 AM
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I have to agree on the pepper spray, I think it would have stopped this immediately
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Old 12-11-12, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Garfield Cat View Post
Yes, next to the park but north of the entrance to Rio Hondo. Maybe 100 yards north.
That sucks. I'll definitely be more alert on the trail now. I've lived in LA for quite a few years; so my distrust of strangers is already pretty high.
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Old 12-11-12, 11:01 AM
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Glad you got your bike back and that the perps were caught.

My guess is that this is not their first rodeo. ADW and grand theft are pretty serious charges ... hopefully, they stick.

I ride by a sketchy neighborhood on a daily basis. Any recommendations on the pepper spray? I've had people give me all kinds of advice on that score, including buying pepper spray meant for bears (supposedly, can be launched fairly long distances and is that much more effective).
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Old 12-11-12, 11:24 AM
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the bear sprays are about the size of a 12oz soda can. The regular versions can still shot 10-15ft or so. Distance is good but aim is more important.

or bring a bigger knife
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Old 12-11-12, 11:26 AM
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Great that they got caught...
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Old 12-11-12, 11:35 AM
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[Putting on Moderator hat** Remember, if this thread turns into YET ANOTHER about the need to carry, the moral responsibility of vigilantism, etc., it will have to go live with all the other derailed threads in A&S.]

GC - glad you're ok, and got your bike back. Losing a Garmin is a whole lot better than losing it all and/or being hurt. Sounds like you kept your head and did what you had to do. Stinks that it happens, though.

Not saying anyone should carry anything. I carry this:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...ls_o02_s01_i00

It's for dogs....really!
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Old 12-11-12, 12:12 PM
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I commute on SART everyday. My return commute is in the evening around 11pm. The best advise (given to me by a police officer) is this, Mind your own business, keep moving, don't stop for anyone or anything. If you get a flat or have a mechanical problem, get off the trail into a well lit area before doing repairs. If I see a suspicious character, I pull the pepper spay and have it in my hand ready to deploy. Try to avoid contact or let anyone stop you. As far as the knife, thats the last option, only to be used in a fight for my life.

Last edited by John R; 12-11-12 at 12:13 PM. Reason: spell change
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Old 12-11-12, 02:42 PM
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Wow! Sorry about your negative encounter on the Rio Hondo Trail. Smart move re giving up the bike and not fighting these thugs. Getting stabbed over a bike ( I don't care how expensive) is not worth it.

Good luck from now on. And I wish myself the same, of course.
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Old 12-11-12, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by PhotoJoe View Post
[Putting on Moderator hat** Remember, if this thread turns into YET ANOTHER about the need to carry, the moral responsibility of vigilantism, etc., it will have to go live with all the other derailed threads in A&S.]

GC - glad you're ok, and got your bike back. Losing a Garmin is a whole lot better than losing it all and/or being hurt. Sounds like you kept your head and did what you had to do. Stinks that it happens, though.

Not saying anyone should carry anything. I carry this:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...ls_o02_s01_i00

It's for dogs....really!
I'm more of the "avoid conflict and hope for the best" mindset but that pepper spray looks interesting, for dogs and such, and it certainly hits the portability bar quite nicely. Are there any pertinent laws in california that preclude us from owning such a dog proofing device? I can't imagine that it's legal, nothing good is around here.
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