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Port Coquitlam man sentenced in North Vancouver bait bike theft

Chad Powell of Port Coquitlam said he knew the bike he stole in July 2022 was planted, according to RCMP.
Jail cell bars - 4x6 Getty Images
Jail cell bars.

RCMP say a Port Coquitlam man "knew" a bike he stole last summer was planted by police.

North Vancouver Mounties said Chad Powell made that remark when they ultimately caught him not far from the bait bike's location.

Powell was sentenced to three weeks in jail on July 8 for the theft after pleading guilty to a charge of theft under $5,000.

The decision was one year after the incident took place — July 6, 2022 — when North Vancouver RCMP's special response team deployed a bait bike on Marine Drive.

The initiative's goal was to combat local property theft.

A man was then seen breaking the bike's lock and pedalling away shortly after it was placed, but police caught up to him a short distance away.

Powell was arrested, but later released pending a court appearance and recommended charges to crown counsel.

"Officers were quite surprised when the man uttered that he knew it was a bait bike but committed the theft anyways," explained RCMP spokesperson Cst. Mansoor Sahak in a release today (July 25).

Powell was sentenced to 21 days in jail and Sahak said he was credited a 30-day pre-sentence time served in custody.

Register your bike

Police in the Tri-Cities continue to encourage bike owners to register with 529 Garage — a free initiative that helps local law enforcement officials find stolen bicycles and return them to their rightful owners.

Each bike's serial number is put into the 529 system, along with other descriptive details such as colour, make and model to help others searching for a stolen two-, three- or four-wheeler.

"Over the last two decades, bike theft in North America has grown to epidemic proportions — affecting about two million riders each year," reads a profile on Garage 529's website.

"Beyond the half-billion dollar cycling black market, many stolen bikes are involved in secondary crimes — serving as a modern 'getaway vehicle' for criminals.

"Our strategy is simple — galvanize riders, shops, police, schools and cities with a common set of tools that allow communities to become better organized than the criminals."

As well, Garage 529 lists the following companies and groups that can register bikes with its program:

Residents are encouraged to call their local detachment to report a stolen bike, including Coquitlam RCMP at 604-945-1550 or PMPD at 604-461-3456.