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Few bicycle thefts reported
Owners often take matters into their own hands rather than contact police

Derek Neary
Northern News Services
Monday, August 7, 2017

When Sheba Pikuyak's daughter's bicycle was stolen in early July, she sprang into action.

Sheba climbed on an all-terrain vehicle and drove around Hall Beach until she spotted the missing bicycle, which someone had taken overnight. The bike was left lying on the side of the road, near a telephone pole. Sheba grabbed it and brought it back home.

"It's a huge problem here in Hall Beach," Pikuyak said of bikes being taken.

Her son's bicycle was stolen last year but it was never returned to him. It was dismantled and used for parts.

"Sometime that happens. There needs to be awareness for bicycle theft," Pikuyak suggested, adding that children need reminders that it's not acceptable to take other people's property.

Despite numerous Facebook messages among Nunavummiut alerting others to be on the lookout for missing bicycles, police are seldom contacted regarding these crimes, according to Const. Danielle Pollock, media coordinator with 'V' Division.

"In the smaller communities, requests for location of missing bicycles are often posted on social media and not reported to police," Pollock stated.

Only nine bicycles were formally reported as stolen over the past year, Pollock said.

Of those, three were returned to their owners. When the police find a missing or stolen bicycle, they'll contact the owner. If the bike isn't claimed in 90 days, it could be donated to charity, Pollock noted.

As for those guilty of bicycle theft, often youths, they are usually dealt with outside a formal justice setting, but in an "effective and timely" way that's focused on correcting the offending behaviour, according to Pollock.

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