Watchful neighbor thwarts bike theft

SAFFORD – Last Monday, an officer was dispatched to a residence on Relation Street in reference to the theft of a bicycle. When the officer arrived, they spoke with the reporting party who lives across the street from the home where the alleged theft occurred. The man said he was standing outside his home around 12:40 am when he saw a man messing with the back yard gate of his neighbor’s house. He stated the man went through the gate, picked up a bicycle and rode it out of the gate. The neighbor called to the man, asking if it was his bike and the alleged thief yelled back that it was and rode northbound on 9th Avenue. However, the man told authorities that he knew the man had just stolen the bike, so he got into his vehicle and followed the man on the bike until he dropped the bike at 9th Avenue and 13th Street and ran away.

The witness called the owner of the bike who was at work, so he had his daughter pick up the bike.

The witness told the officer that he believed the bike thief had been talking to his next door neighbor just before the theft occurred. The officer spoke with the neighbor who identified the man. The officer then went the suspect’s home and asked him to come back to the scene to be identified. The man complied but when the witness saw him, he told the officer that he was not the man who took the bike.

Later the officer spoke with the witness and a different mans name was given as the suspect. The officer ran a check on the man and discovered that he had a warrant for his arrest. The officer attempted to locate the man, but at the time of the report, he had not been located.