Posted by lock it or lose it, a resident of the Old Mountain View neighborhood, on Apr 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm
As the Palo Alto police keep saying, "lock it or lose it". Most bicycles are stolen from peoples homes, not off the street. That includes locked garages that are easy to crowbar open. People need to lock their bicycles, even when they are inside their homes. Crooks know how much money they can get for high-end bicycles and often case neighborhoods to see who owns them.
Posted by bike tyson, a resident of the Shoreline West neighborhood, on Apr 30, 2012 at 1:31 pm
They probably just climbed the balcony with ropes/lowered the bikes down with ropes in the middle of the night.
I'm sure the bikes were up on a wall mount, just begging to be taken. Most people don't think they should worry about locking their bikes if they're up on a balcony, but they should. At least put them inside if you're going on vacation, or stop spending so much on a bike until you get a proper house.
Posted by lock it or lose it, a resident of the Old Mountain View neighborhood, on Apr 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm
Some of the crooks just watch people come home on weekend afternoons with expensive bikes displayed on their car roofs. Then they return during the work week to steal them. The victim doesn't have to be on vacation for a week. Just takes a few minutes to break in run off. With Craigslist, thieves have an easier time fencing stolen bicycles than jewelry or electronics.
Posted by edgy, a resident of the Waverly Park neighborhood, on Apr 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm
I'm sure them being on vacation was a non-factor. If there was a suitcase full of $5,000 dangling on a balcony, I'm sure somebody with a grapple hook would come along and grab it within a day.
It's not exactly the safest part of Mountain View (close to the trailer park) and this stuff happens. Even if it was locked up Pee Wee's Big Adventure style on the ground floor, it can still lifted pretty easily.
I doubt the thieves even knew the value until they took it to the annual stolen bike silent auction at the community center.