Bik3d teams up with 'Stolen Bikes' Facebook Group in Cambridge

Bik3d teams up with 'Stolen Bikes' Facebook Group in Cambridge

Bik3d is excited to be collaborating with the Facebook Group Stolen Bikes in Cambridge.

Started by Omar Terywall and now with a membership of nearly 12000, the group is determined to reduce bike theft and where possible reunite owners with their property.

Cambridge’s local bike vigilante, also known as “Bike Batman”, has been on a mission to return stolen bikes to their owners over the last couple of years. In the process he's gained praise from locals who, in a city like Cambridge, see and hear stories of bike theft all to often.

Between his own good deeds, and the work of fellow 'bike vigilante's more than 400 bikes, and counting, have been recovered and returned to their rightful owners. Three years ago when Cambridgeshire Live reported on a man seemingly confronting bike thieves, he then confiscated the stolen bike. That man was Omar Terywall.

Omar shared the article on his profile and many friends got in touch to suggest he create his own Facebook page to help other cycle theft victims. The Facebook page “Stolen Bikes in Cambridge” has been described as “the biggest neighbourhood watch in the UK”. To date the page has more than 11,500 members.

Omar explained what he believed the group’s biggest successes to be. He said: "We have many success stories but one that comes to mind is where we led the police to a property in Cambridge where a bike fitted with a tracking device.

“The tracker revealed a hidden compartment at the back of a garden shed leading to the discovery of a workshop and 6-7 high-end bikes - all zip tied and ready for export. We worked with the owners of Backpedal who stayed close by and watched for four agonising days before the police visited during daylight hours."

Like many other bike owners across the UK, Omar shares his concerns about the Police's handling of bike theft, speaking about his group's biggest failure, he said: “In my opinion our biggest failure is the inability to get police involved at crucial moments. The windows of opportunity are so narrow, it pains me when they're missed. However, he remains optimistic about Cambridgeshire at least as the group work closely with a few officers resulting in approx. 10 stolen bikes being successfully reunited with their owners in the past three months.  

“We have seen multiple informants tracking the same motorcycle over several days, noting its plate being changed, spotting it at various locations - only to be found torched. In some cases, some victims have given the exact address that a bike or motorbike has been kept but they didn’t act quickly enough."

Omar said that he “constantly” received threats, and has considered stepping aside from the Stolen Bikes group many times. However, he has said “many people contact him” and it’s “difficult to say no to people who need help”.

Omar explained that it would help if those who often come across abandoned bikes posted the make and model and picture of the bike on social media to help locate the owner. He added: “We can easily double our success rate if the police were to simply share non sensitive information with us on bikes reported in. This was discussed back in November 2021 and we are still no further with organising this."

Omar would like police to regularly check the intelligence they are being sent as he believes it could “lead to more arrests.

It's worth noting that some bikes have already been recovered using an AirTag or similar Bluetooth device. We are pleased to have Bik3d with us, they have a wide product range covering all main-stream Bluetooth trackers and to suit all applications, not just cycling. The discreet nature and ease of installation with no loss of signal will only help secure more stolen bikes in the future.

If you’d like to learn more about Omar and his group of bike-detectives you can do so on their Facebook page here.

If you are a member of the Stolen Bikes in Cambridge Group please refer to the group for a discount code against all Bik3d products.


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