Warmer weather brings

As more bicyclists dust off their rides from winter storage and tool around campus, bike thieves are taking advantage of the increased numbers.
In the past week, 10 bikes were reported stolen on campus. Only two were stolen the previous week.
But University Police Detective Marianne Olson said it is not unusual to have so many bikes stolen during the spring. With the warmer weather comes increased thievery.
“It’s easier pickings,” she said. “There are more bikes out now.”
The increase, Olson added, is caused by the combination of students not securing their bikes correctly and thieves breaking or cutting locks.
Ross Kiehne, a junior in the College of Veterinary Medicine, had his bike stolen sometime during the Easter weekend while he was out of town.
He said he and his wife, Melissa, locked their bikes together outside their apartment in Commonwealth Terrace near the St. Paul campus. The thieves cut through the cable lock Kiehne used and took his Trek, but left his wife’s Murray.
Kiehne said he thought the Murray was a good bike, but not good enough for the thieves to take.
“I had a better lock, but I didn’t use it because the cable-lock went through both our bikes,” Kiehne said.
He said when he reported the theft, University Police didn’t convince him the bike could be retrieved.
“The police didn’t make it sound like they planned to find it,” Kiehne said. He added that his insurance company would cover the loss.
Police officials recommend bicycle owners register their bikes with them via serial numbers.
If police find a stolen bike that is registered, they can match up the serial number with a universal database listing the number and the name and address of the owner.

In other police news:

ù A fire blazed near campus Friday night, but people were not roasting marshmallows.
Minneapolis police suspect arson after a Lincoln Town Car was set ablaze Friday night near campus.
The car went up in flames in front of 152 27th Ave. S.E.
Minneapolis Police Sgt. Wally Krueger said he believes the fire was arson because it started on both the hood and the trunk. The fire never spread to the car’s interior.
There are no suspects in the case.
Meuane Phommavanh, the owner of the car, could not be reached for comment.

ù The Easter Bunny delivered some goodies to a University student this weekend, but the Easter Bandit got to them before she could.
Kim Johnson received a note from a Frontier Hall front desk employee telling her she had a package. When she tried to retrieve the package a front desk staff member told her that her Easter basket, complete with $150 in cash, had been stolen.
University Police officer Al Sloan said the thief opened the package and stole the basket. He said he has no suspects and doesn’t think one will be identified.