October 16, 2014

It CAN—and Does!—Happen Here

Don't be lulled into a false sense of security, cyclists: Bikejacking happens here, too. The first I'd heard of bike-theft-under-threat-of-bodily-harm was a June story about bikejacking in South Africa, but now I learn that such crimes happen in Cleveland, and with some frequency.

Cleveland's NewsNet5 reports two bikejackings in the same week: (1) a 24-year-old man stabbed and relieved of his wallet, phone, and bicycle and (2) a man robbed of his bike while waiting for a bus. In August an Ohio City man lost his bike to a shotgun-toting assailant with a bandana over his face.

How to avoid falling victim to such attacks? Plan your routes, a commuter tells the camera crew. Steer clear of poorly lit or near-deserted areas. And if you don't have the bodily heft to deter could-be bikejackers, consider packing some pepper spray.

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