Stolen Bikes on Craigslist

While looking up some bikes on Craigslist for a friend, it started to dawn on me which ones were most likely stolen and which were not.
Now, it’s obviously a gut feeling, but take a look and let me know what you think.

Example #1:

I used to be red.

Craigslist Text: “It’s ready to ride. newly painted (metallic blue) has new tires. new inner tubes. new spring saddle. new brake wires. fully tuned and greased. has rear aluminum rack. frame measures 56cm and tires are 26″ measures 19″ inches from center to top. take it for $85. contact me at(323)235-1874..im located in South L.A off the 110fwy. call me and ill give you my complete adress. 1st come 1st serve! HURRY!contact me at(323)235-1874…Schwinn Woman’s Road Bike”

Why I think it’s stolen:

  • Bike has been repainted to mask original color
  • South LA near the 110 is a not-great neighborhood with high bike theft rates
  • Guy that posted has five other listings on Craigslist that are similar in nature, but for very different bikes
  • The bike was probably a junker that someone used for commuting or abandoned, if this guy had to put on new tires and brake wires

Example #2:

help me i am in hell


Craigslist Text: “It’s ready to ride. frame measures 58cm and tires are 26″ measures 19″ inches from center to top. take it for $40. contact me at(323)235-1874..im located in South L.A off the 110fwy. call me and ill give you my complete adress. 1st come 1st serve! HURRY!contact me at(323)235-1874..Huffy Mountain Bike 21-Speed”

Why I think it’s stolen:

  • It’s from the same guy who posted above
  • Bike is $40?? That is pretty cheap, especially if you compare against other similar bikes on Craigslist that don’t appear to be stolen
  • This bike appears to be in good shape and the poster didn’t mention anything about having to fix it up. That leads me to believe that this was more likely a teenager’s bike that wasn’t properly locked up that got jacked

Example #3:

strung up like a hawwggg


Craigslist Text: “selling a treck bike 100.oo asap call 323-691-0073”

Why I think it’s stolen:

  • Crappy picture in a closed off/hidden area
  • 323 area code generally denotes a crappy part of town (I had a 323 when I lived in south central)
  • They don’t know how to spell ‘Trek’ right. It’s a basic four letter word. It’s not like the bike is a Bianchi or Merckx
  • Looking at the bike, even if it’s a lesser model Trek, $100 is a ridiculous price
  • Lack of technical specs on the bike
  • The ‘asap’ denotes to me that they want the hot property off their hands and the cool $100 instead

I fucking hate you, bike thieves. If you are now more worried about your bike, here is my post on how to properly secure your bike.

4 thoughts on “Stolen Bikes on Craigslist

  1. I’ve seen posts from that first dude for a couple years now. I’m not saying those bikes aren’t stolen, but I don’t think they are just based on the posts. $40 bucks for a POS walmart mtn bike isn’t high.

    Also why is work done to the first bike evidence of stealing but the second bike not needing any work ALSO evidence of stealing? Is there a sweet spot in the middle?

    My guess is this dude hits up garage sales for whatever bikes he can find and then flips shit on craigslist. My real issue with this asshole is that he’s obviously a business (strike 1), he posts a million ads (strike 2) and he posts them every day (strike 3). He’s one of a few sellers I flag constantly but it never seems to do anything. For another example of this type of dickhead, search “el segundo” in the bikes section. You’ll find a dude with a million postings, all of which with pictures in his driveway.

    I don’t really think the third bike is stolen either, at least not from that listing. I don’t think 100 bucks for a late 80s trek with 27″ wheels (guessing based on the reflectors) is crazy, especially if someone just needs the cash last minute for a bill or an emergency or something.

    I also think you contradict yourself again here. I think it’s kinda fucked up to argue that someone with a 323 area code is more likely to be a bike thief, but take it further here. If you lived in some shitty area in the 323, and you had a bike, you’d keep it in a “closed off/hidden area” so that people on the street couldn’t see it and wouldn’t know to try to steal it. I would imagine that if you lived in such an area, you’d probably be more likely not to have a nicer digital camera either haha.

    As for “treck” and a lack of specs, these are definitely things that can be signs of a stolen bike but I’d say it’s more often just idiocy (or illiteracy/lack of english fluency).

  2. The time you spent putting together this analysis u could have flipped 5-10 bikes for a $1500-$2000 profit. U need time management retard.

    Get a life…..

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