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Thread Box:
Police impound Chris R's bike
Thread started by Harv at 04.23.12 - 1:19 pm

I am bringing this thread over from Facebook, as I have no account there. The story is that Chris' On-One bike, purchased from Bike Oven in August of 2011 was seized by LAPD who claimed it was stolen three years ago.

I personally built this bike from a bare frame and sold it to Chris. I have the Bike Oven copy of the original receipt. I noted on the receipt that there was no serial number. Before I built it up, I inspected the frame carefully for any kind of identifying number. There was none.

Therefore, there is no way the police could determine whether this bike was ever stolen. One of the Bike Oven staff remembers exactly how we came by this frame. There was no reason, at that time, to suspect it was stolen, and no way to verify it in any case. It was claimed that the police officer recognized the bike which was locked up at the time. Since I used non-standard (for an On-One bike) components, this would not be possible, as the bike, as built, looked like nothing available in the OEM catalog.

While we are sorting all this out, we will be happy to supply Chris with a loaner bike.


Nice work Harv. Hopefully Sgt. Krumer can help Chris get his bike back, as it was/is pretty important to him, and he was a good faith buyer of the bike from a good faith seller.

04.23.12 - 1:29 pm


Thank You Harv, Thank You JB, Thank You Roadblock, Thank You Andy

Any and all help super, super appreciated... i'm just dying right now, and as much it may seem not worth it, or to move-on... i can't imagine not having this bike in my life anymore. i have loved every moment of it, including slowly upgrading it, and completely transforming my life, over the past 7-8 months riding this bike.

This is copied from my own FB posts, and posts in WPH group on FB (posts are by myself, unless otherwise listed):

While having breakfast at Denny's on Vermont/101 intersection, about 7:30 am Saturday morning, my bicycle was locked out front. The lock was cut by police, and confiscated. Supposedly, i was told - it was part of a "sting" operation as a bait-bike about 3 yrs ago. Being the very rare British "On-One" frame that it is, the bike was recognized by a detective involved in the case years ago, and he ordered it to be confiscated as stolen property. I have owned this bike for almost 7-8 months. I purchased it through the Bike Oven, located at 3706 N Figureoa St, LA 90065. I have a receipt for the purchase of the bike, which i paid $300 for (bought from Harv, who works at the bike oven - the frame/fork was donated, and the rest of the bike was custom built by Harv).

I was told i could do nothing, but call on monday to: Pacific Division 12312 Culver blvd., LA 90066 at 310.482.6313. Supposedly Detective Dinos, Amrantos or Lt. Yang #25078, is who i need to speak to (according to the hand-written note i received, from the seargant in charge at the scene). The following officers were at the scene: Diaz #35637, Mariscal #35457, Rulin #40542, Robinson #38470 and these numbers: 2A1W-3, 2A17W-2 were also written on the note, handed to me by Sgt. Scarlett M. Nuno #33411

I am not very proficient legally, and emotionally unstable at the moment, in regards to this. Anyone have any advice, as to how i should proceed in handling this? I just want my bike back... thank you

P.S. - i'm broke, i have no money at the moment... this bike has been to the hustle ride a couple times, made it through the WPH Crash Race last month, and has an average of 200+ miles a week, ridden by yours truly right here. i can't imagine it not being in my life anymore... my heart f*ing stopped yesterday. I was told... "ride a bus home" by the police, as they left me standing in the parking lot, after cutting my lock and stealing my bike. they also removed parts of the WPH stickers, that were located on the bottom tube near the crank.

Posted by Andy Lenigan:

I was volunteering at the Oven the night this bike showed up. At the time it didn't trigger any warning bells, as we get high end stuff donated all the time. The person dropping it off was a tall British guy saying he had it shipped over from England, never built it up, and was returning home in a few days and didn't want to bother with the hassle and costs of shipping it back. It was in a large box, with the frame, fork, and other components wrapped in shipping foam. It had his address (in CA) as well as the return in England. We do not have this box anymore, in case that was your next question (it was several months ago.) British guy, British bike, shipping materials from England.

As far as the Oven's handling of this event and future situations: We will get Chris on a bike ASAP. We have a single speed that Harv is building up right now. Any donated bikes worth over +-$200 will be checked with the stolen bike database. This is a time consuming process as we have to actually go to the police station and have them run the numbers, (why isn't this available on the internet to the public?) which is why we won't be doing it for the Magnas etc.

I've talked with Harv at the oven, and there was no visible serial number on the frame, but no signs of anything being removed or tampered with. I don't know how Culver City PD thinks this is their bike. We built it from a frame up with our own components. I would love to know how they intend to prove this frame belonged to them. It sounds like they are violating your fourth amendment rights.

‎Andy Lenigan, thank you thank you thank you for you help! I just got off the phone w Pacific Division a moment ago. I couldn't not speak to anyone other than Officer who answered the phone, as she mentioned everyone in bike theft dept. was out in training today. Apparently, the bike belonged to Det. Chase Richard Householder, she said - it was his bike. How it got to the Bike Oven, is a mystery... I was told to speak to Lt. Yang #25078, but he was no there, nor was Det. Dinos, Amrantos.

Funny thing, after getting off the phone 5 mins ago, i just now received a call at 1:20 pm from 714.316.8457, an OC number, and apparently the officer (or guy, idk) on the phone, thought i was Richard Householder - and he was saying "we got your bike back!". i explained to him who i was, and he was a bit confused - he hung up quick, but said he would call me back. The officer at Pacific Division took my number, and also said i would receive a call back...

i have the receipt from the Bike Oven, and unfortunately, under serial #, it says " NONE" :(

my receipt is signed by Harv and dated 9/23/11

04.23.12 - 1:41 pm


This is what I wrote on the WPH facebook thread.

I was volunteering at the Oven the night this bike showed up. At the time it didn't trigger any warning bells, as we get high end stuff donated all the time. The person dropping it off was a tall British guy saying he had it shipped over from England, never built it up, and was returning home in a few days and didn't want to bother with the hassle and costs of shipping it back. It was in a large box, with the frame, fork, and other components wrapped in shipping foam. It had his address (in CA) as well as the return in England. We do not have this box anymore, in case that was your next question (it was several months ago.) British guy, British bike, shipping materials from England.

As far as the Oven's handling of this event and future situations: We will get Chris on a bike ASAP. We have a single speed that Harv is building up right now. Any donated bikes worth over +-$200 will be checked with the stolen bike database. This is a time consuming process as we have to actually go to the police station and have them run the numbers, (why isn't this available on the internet to the public?) which is why we won't be doing it for the Magnas etc.

[Bike Oven] Andy
04.23.12 - 1:44 pm


from all the info you have given. it seems pretty clear that this is not the same bike.

i sen't Krumer a direct email uncase he hasn't seen this yet.

I hope you get your bike back soon and the the police who over-corrected after bungling a sting operation are held accountable for illegally taking your bike.

04.23.12 - 3:56 pm


A while back stilline saw a shady dude selling a nice fixie cheap.
He took a pic, did some research, found it was stolen, found the owner, got the police to respond, . The shady dude was intimidated in the giving the bike up because he stole it or knew it was stolen. But, even though they had this dude red handed trying to sell it, they said they can not make an arrest because there was no serial #

Now if they can't arrest somebody for selling a stolen bike with no serial #, how can they steal a person's bike with no serial # and claim to know the ownership? Or do they have a serperate set of rule for a ploce owned bike than a citizen owned bike?


It may be the same frame and even the same size, but there is absolutely no way for them to prove that this is the same bike.

They gangstered a citizen out of his property because they are embarrassed about losing an officer's rare bike in a sting.

responding to a comment by Redline
04.23.12 - 4:10 pm


I am looking into it...give me a day or so and I will see what can be done.

Thanks to trickmilla for bringing it to my attention.

Sgt. David Krumer
04.24.12 - 8:04 am


I have left a message for the detective and hope to speak with him when he returns to the office later this week.

Please email me at 35128@lapd.lacity.org and I will be happy answer you questions in detail.

Sgt. David Krumer
04.24.12 - 9:19 am


Thank you Sgt Krumer, and again thank you thank you thank you for everyone's assistance. Waitin patiently, hopes up!

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
04.24.12 - 11:18 am


I hope you get your bike back soon Chris!! This is messed up...I am astonished!! I am glad you have the staff at the Bike Oven and Sgt. Krumer on your side. You were so wronged here! I remember when you got the bike last year too...I know how much it means to you, and I'm sure justice will be served on this one. It is still ridiculous you have to go through this though. Good luck and Blessings man! Stay positive!!

04.24.12 - 12:08 pm



04.25.12 - 4:51 pm


Just called and e-mailed the Detective supervisor for an update. I hope to get a response by the weekend and will advise as to the procedures for something like this.

Sgt. David Krumer
04.26.12 - 11:55 am


I know this staff writer of the LA Weekly who would love to write a story on this.

Could I have them contact Chris?

Joe Borfo
04.26.12 - 12:08 pm


my bad. they actually work for the onyon.

Joe Borfo
04.26.12 - 12:39 pm


Los Angeles police officers doing the wrong thing by a cyclist? Surely not.

04.26.12 - 3:27 pm



responding to a comment by PC
04.26.12 - 5:54 pm



Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by uplr
04.27.12 - 3:35 pm


Even ”The Krume” has a troll account!

responding to a comment by uplr
04.27.12 - 5:00 pm


@ Sgt. K any movement on this?

I saw this very dismaying comment on Chris's face book page

"I called Pacific Division again today, and spoke to the officer in charge of theft dept. - he was not the name I have listed as the officer in charge of my case, so I'm a bit confused and annoyed - but he said, simply: " all bikes have serial numbers, so the fact that my bike has no number, means it is stolen property." he wouldn't listen to anything else I said..."

A simple google search for bicycle "no serial number" easily disproves this statement. There are lots of bikes from many different manufacturers and frame builders that have no serial #s.

Please let us know what's going on with this.
There seems to be a lack of accountability for these officer's that have essentially stolen a bicycle and won't give it back.

04.29.12 - 10:51 pm


Los Angeles police officers trying to speak authoritatively and dispositively on subjects they know absolutely nothing about? Surely not.

responding to a comment by trickmilla
04.30.12 - 11:36 am


in regards to the passage quoted it's "officer" not "officers".

responding to a comment by PC
04.30.12 - 12:36 pm


Well, that changes everything.

responding to a comment by trickmilla
04.30.12 - 12:39 pm


Still working on it. Will most likely have an update on Wednesday after May Day.

Sgt. David Krumer
04.30.12 - 1:27 pm


Update SGT? Let's get him his bike back.

I hope he files a complaint/presses charges on the officer who stole it from him.

05.2.12 - 4:48 pm


I am still watching this thread like a hawk.

Non OEM parts and yet the officer recognized the bike as stolen? Is this officer a bike expert? Are there photos of the bike or some sort of reasonable records to prove that the bike in question is the same bike as was stolen 3 years ago?

How do you go about proving things without serial numbers or photos to back up your claims? I am curious to find out what is going on here.

05.2.12 - 6:44 pm


Everyone hold your breath.

Keep on holding.

05.2.12 - 7:21 pm


Very interested to see how this turns out.

05.2.12 - 7:43 pm


yup, still holding my breath... patiently waiting

i haven't heard anything yet, either

btw, i'm chris - it's my bike that was impounded - for those that are not aware

thanks again to Andy from the bike oven and Sgt. Krumer, who i am aware are both working on this, as best they can. i continue to hope that the police will realize that is certainly NOT the same bike, they were hoping it to be, and that they do return it to me.

also, thanks to Andy, Chicken, Alice, Harv and others at the Bike Oven for the loaner bike, while waiting to hear back on this

Patrick, thanks for being all over this, also. im hoping we don't have resort to media attention for this... lets hope the police are nice enough to own up to their mistake, return my bike and maybe even give me an apology, for all the inconvenience they've caused myself, and others in this matter. i don't even need an apology, if i get the bike back - but it would certainly be appreciated!

anyway.. thanks again to everyone for all your help!

responding to a comment by FBI
05.2.12 - 7:52 pm


i think that the officer saw the bike liked it and just stole it. people steel bikes all the time. so this officer said fuck it i have a badge i can do what i want. he grabbed the bike and said " THATS MY BIKE PUNK!" and now he is up one bike.

responding to a comment by TheDude
05.2.12 - 10:01 pm


but im still hoping chris gets his bike back and an apology in writing.

05.2.12 - 10:02 pm


so this officer said fuck it i have a badge i can do what i want.

This has pretty much been LAPD's unwritten policy for a hundred years.

responding to a comment by andres84
05.2.12 - 11:03 pm


I took the day off...was working late on May Day. When I get back to the office I will call touch base.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by Redline
05.2.12 - 11:25 pm


Are you the only officer competent enough to handle this? why can't it be taken care of on your day off? What happened to the officer who took the bike. Has complaint been made on him? Is he being reprimanded for stealing someones property?

05.3.12 - 11:56 am


Hi Revolution,

No complaint has been filed against the officer and it is unlikely one will be as there is no misconduct for taking possession of the bike. Clearly you believe the officers "stole" the bike from Chris. However Penal Code section 537E(b) specifically states:

(a)Any person who knowingly buys, sells, receives, disposes of, conceals, or has in his or her possession any personal property from which the manufacturer's serial number, identification number, electronic serial number, or any other distinguishing number or identification mark has been removed, defaced, covered, altered, or destroyed, is guilty of a public offense, punishable as follows...

For purposes of this subdivision, "personal property" includes, but is not limited to, the following:

(6)Any bicycle, exercise equipment, or any other entertainment or recreational equipment.

Chris' bicycle did not have a manufacturer's serial number and falls within the scope of this section. Because there is no evidence that Chris knowingly possessed a bicycle that is legally considered stolen he was not arrested. However the section goes on to say that:

When property described in subdivision (a) comes into the custody of a peace officer it shall become subject to the provision of Chapter 12 (commencing with Section 1407) of Title 10 of Part 2, relating to the disposal of stolen or embezzled property. Property subject to this section shall be considered stolen or embezzled property for the purposes of that chapter, and prior to being disposed of, shall have an identification mark imbedded or engraved in, or permanently affixed to it.

So the officer can legally take possession of the property and it is not "stealing." Keep in mind the officer is protecting the owners rights....its just that there is a dispute as to who the legal owner is.

I stopped by the Bike Oven today around 2:00, but they were closed. I will try and touch base with them and collect any documentation they have from when they acquired the bike. Additionally we will make an attempt to lift the serial number that was removed. The process takes a bit of time as we will also be contacting the manufacturer to determine how many bikes of that type were sold and if the party who brought the frame to the Bike Oven matches the manufacturer records.

I verified that there was a report made in May of 2008 for a bike that appears to be the one that Chri had in his possession.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by revolution
05.3.12 - 4:39 pm


there is usually someone at the oven monday threw thursday from 6 to 10. but monday and wednesdays are the best days to go. sat and sunday are ok to go too from 12-4 i think .

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.3.12 - 6:19 pm


I will call today and maybe we can schedule a meet during the day on Monday or Tuesday.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by andres84
05.3.12 - 6:45 pm


Andy should be at the Oven right now (approx. 8:00pm, Thursday). I will be happy to meet with you during the day next week at the Oven.

Regarding "lifting the removed serial number", the frame had the original paint and decals which were flawless and un-marked when I unpacked the frame. I would notice any filings and/or repainted areas which would indicate an altered number. Any such now obvious alterations to Chris' bike would have to have been done since it was taken from him.

Approximately 20% of the bikes/frames that go through the Bike Oven have no serial numbers. I don't think there is a law that says a bicycle frame builder has to number the frames. Unlike automobiles and motorcycles which have to have a specifically formatted number in a specific location on the chassis.

Unfortunately, we don't usually keep records when a bike or frame is donated, unless requested by the donor. We have been getting pallet loads of bikes and frames that have been sold through "Property Room" and may have been stolen at one time, but have been cleared through the Sheriff's dept. Chris' bike however, was not one of these, it came from a private donor, as Andy has stated previously.

05.3.12 - 8:04 pm


Is the officer going to be charged for possessing a "stolen" bike with no serial number?

It seems quite reckless for an officer to have a bike/ much less put a bike out in public without a serial number.

It seems that since they are obviously aware of the law(using it to take possession of it), they should be punished for violating Penal Code section 537E(b).

05.5.12 - 6:08 pm


A Los Angeles police officer, being so purposely obtuse that it's like talking to a brick wall behind another brick wall? Surely not.

05.6.12 - 5:36 am


Sgt. Krumer, any word? Thank you...

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.7.12 - 1:04 pm


The bike had a serial number at the time it was stolen...the basis for taking Chris' bike into custody is that the serial number was removed.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by revolution
05.7.12 - 4:08 pm


Met with folks over at the Bike Oven...they provided me with some additional info that we can compare to the manufacturer specifications. The Detective that was originally assigned the case is on vacation and thus it was reassigned to a different detective. I will touch base with the new investigator and see where we are with attempts to recover the serial number.

Sgt. David Krumer
05.7.12 - 4:11 pm


Have you seen the bike or did somebody describe the evidence of the serial number removal?

Multiple witnesses claim the bike was clean and had the original paint was untampered with and had no serial number, so its a little weird to hear you stating with confidence that a serial number had been removed from the frame.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.7.12 - 10:10 pm


I have not seen the bike...going to do that tomorrow. The one that was stolen had a serial number that was documented on the original report...which I pulled. While some bike frames may not have a serial number, On-One is a legitimate company that would not produce a frame without stamping it with a serial. I will be calling the On-One distributer in Oregan to confirm their business practices.

I can not definitively say the serial was removed but I can say with confidence that it is highly unlikely that no serial number was stamped, and thus if it did not have one it was most likely removed. The fact that Chris' bike did not have one is justification in itself to take custody of the bike as presumably stolen per the penal code section listed above.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.7.12 - 10:57 pm


If theres one thing we can learn from this fiasco, its that the LAPD are not very good at bike stings!

05.8.12 - 3:25 pm


I hope Chris is able to pursue some kind of civil suit and get and even better bicycle.

It seems the officer would have already been able to identify the bike and components.

Any of us could take one look and identify our bikes. OR maybe he did, realized it wasn't his, and is now playing the game to acquire a new bike.

05.8.12 - 3:50 pm


based on what I've read in this post...I'm assuming that the "bike sting" bicycle was a built up, complete bicycle....

based on that, I find it very hard to believe that someone would steal said "sting" bike, remove the components, erase the serial number, repaint the bike (to hide the erased serial number), take it all apart, take the time to box it up, and then donate it to the Bike Oven....

we also clearly have TWO witnesses who have seen this donated frame from the beginning and helped build up this bike for Chris....

Harv has tinkered with bicycles longer than most people have been alive (sorry Harv) and when he inspected the original "donated" bike frame, he would have seen if something had been tampered with or refinished, ESPECIALLY where serial numbers are concerned...

and this was DONATED... why would someone who stole a bike, donate it??

unless the police are now implying something even more sinister??

05.8.12 - 3:55 pm


I think they are well aware at this point that it is a different bike.

It would have taken them 2 seconds to match up chris's bike with the one on the police report. if that had been possible it would have been a done deal the monday morning after the bike was impounded.

Since its is clearly not the same bike, the story has switched to:
All "legitimate" bikes have serial numbers
All "legitimate" bikes without serial numbers have had had the numbers removed.
Therefore any "legitimate" bike without a serial number is stolen property and subject to police seizure.

responding to a comment by adrian
05.8.12 - 4:32 pm


that is a scary assumption on their part...

as I said before, I don't think someone who steals a bike would spend the time to sand down serial numbers and then repaint the area to hide it...

responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.8.12 - 4:50 pm


I contacted the manufacturers United States distributer in Oregan (listed on website). They advised that all on-one bikes have a serial number stamped on them. On the inbred they said it should be on the bottom bracket opposite the gear. I made an appointment to examine the bicycle on Thursday at 9:00 a.m. The fact that this bike had no apparent serial number is already suspect...I agree with another post that says it makes no sense for a person to go to the trouble of stealing a bike, removing a serial number, than donating it...yet we are still confronted with the fact that a bike that should have a serial has none.

I am not sure what you mean by taken two seconds to match the bike considering there is apparently no serial to match. I am also not sure how you concluded that clearly it is not the same bike? I requested a chemical test to expose the serial number. Keep in mind the officer was not given the bicycle either and it is being kept until an owner can be identified.

It might just come down to the two claimants going to court if a serial number is not exposed.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.9.12 - 7:19 pm


So if the frame doesn't have a serial number he might have to go to court to get it back? He is at least entitled to the components sans a court date since the Bike Oven put those on and they therefore cannot be part of the original alleged stolen bike frame and fork from 3 years ago. The origin of the frame and fork are the only things in question.

This whole thing is so nutty.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.9.12 - 7:58 pm


I'm grinding off all my serial numbers on my bikes now.

Joe Borfo
05.9.12 - 8:01 pm


And let me start my rant by saying that Sgt. Krumer is a very lovely man :D

BUT... Cccccccccome on LAPD :/ You guys are making yourselves look really really bad :/ Getting back to everyones inquiries late with excuses-excuses-excuses every time. And does the police department have smart phones??? If so, why did you not just take a picture of the bike and send it to Mr. OnOne in Oregon and ask him if that was a bike he ever manufactured???? If you were certain this was a stolen bike, I am pretty sure this would have been your next step. YOU COULD HAVE SAVED ALL THE GAS IT'S GOING TO TAKE YOU TO GET FROM DTLA 2 PALMS :/ fail. Even worse: I would like to see you take half as much time on finding out who was in that Lexus that hit our friend Pinky Racer (Susanna Schick) :/ is the person who got their bike stolen 3 YEARS AGO - still even looking for their bike? Oh gosh my blood is boiling - I have to go meditate on this. Good day.

05.9.12 - 8:57 pm


Hi Katnip,

That the bike is an on-one is not in dispute so a picture is not necessary. I asked the representative if they can trace the owner by serial number and he replied in the negative. The bike was subject to seizure regardless of whether it belongs to the person claiming it is his stolen bike because it had its serial number removed. There are no excuses being offered...only explaination. But if I am failing to explain why the LAPD did what they did than please forgive my lapse. The short of it is this:

1) A person claims that he sees a bike that he believes is his stolen bike.
2) Officers respond ready to compare the serial number on the report to the one on the frame.
3) Officers discover the serial number has been removed
4) Bikes with serial numbers removed are presumed stolen by the California Penal Code.
5) Officers take custody of the bike until ownership can be determined.

It seems that officers did everything by the book.

WIth regards to Susanna...independant evidence corroborated that a collision did not take place. Susanna can get a copy of the report that will detail what evidence was used to make that determination.

Again, I apologise if I failed to properly clarify the LAPD's actions and underlying reasoning. I am as always happy to answer any further questions.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by katnip
05.9.12 - 11:12 pm


Hi Anty,

In the event that Chris does not get the bike back, I will attempt to make arrangements for the componants to be returned.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by anty
05.9.12 - 11:14 pm


You have never provided any evidence that a serial number has been removed only that your colleagues were unable to locate one.

it's true that it is One-one's practice is to number every frame, but that is The policy of many major bike companies yet there are tons of examples of many major bike companies that have bikes out there that do not have serial numbers. Prototypes, custom builds, etc. Asking the opinion some distributor in Portland about the practices of a company based in England isn't grounds for seizing sombody's property.

Even if that question had been asked BEFORE police seized the bike.

Are there any scratches, abrasions, evidence of body work? Bondo?

i contacted the Rotherham office of On-One and they said that some older models have
Serial numbers on the chian stay, and the rear wheel might need to be removed to find it, has anybody looked there?

Trustworthy people in our community have provided very credible evidence about the legitimacy of this bike, and without even seeing the bike you have presumed them to be liars or inept in order to protect the actions of your colleagues, and to be honest I find it kind of insulting.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.9.12 - 11:51 pm


Are you fucking kidding me?

Krumer, you're a pretty okay cat. Thanks for engaging in conversation on the topic.


I have an American Iron Road Machine and Track Machine, both built by Chris Herting, specifically for me. They are both legit and prized posessions of mine.

No one is entitled to them. Not the LAPD. Not the Sheriff. Not the FBI. Not the Second Fucking Coming of Christ.


I also have bicycles that I've built myself. They also don't have serial numbers.

Can't have those either. Nope. I will not surrender them under any circumstance. You can shoot me if you like, but it won't do any good. Still mine.

In fact, I build tons of stuff for myself. None with serial numbers. None stolen. All of it, the result of MY money and MY time. This is not just limited to bicycles.

Someone should fix the CPC. Seriously.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.10.12 - 10:18 am


Sgt. Krumer, would it be possible to give the public access to the stolen / recovered bike database (or to create one if there isn't one)? It'd be a lot easier for bike shops and co-ops to check if a bike were stolen, and for bike owners to see if their bike had been recovered, if this information were readily available online.

05.10.12 - 11:52 am


Sgt. Krumer,

Would it be possible to give the public access to the stolen / recovered bicycle database (or create one if there isn't one)?

It'd be a lot easier for bike shops and co-ops to check the status of a used bike, or for victims of bike theft to see if their bike had been recovered, if this information were readily available online.

05.10.12 - 11:54 am


Hi jetfuel,

The penal code section that was used as authority specifically states that if a manufacturers serial number is removed it is presumed stolen...if there was never a serial number like on some build it yourself kits than it would not apply.

I share your reverence for personal property and would advocate to have any law that compromises ownership rights changed.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by jetfuel
05.10.12 - 7:16 pm


Hi JB,

Actually there is. Pawn shops are required to send the police department a list of all items they take into their possession...complete with model and serial numbers when applicable. Items that typically have serial numbers that are missing serial numbers are flagged and no legitimate pawn shop will allow the transaction. I recommended to the folks at the bike oven to consider refusing any donations of bicycles that appear to have a serial number removed (vs never having one)...or in the alternative obtain the ID of the donor so that if there is an issue later on the police would be able to follow up. The database is not open access but if you suspect a frame is stolen you can contact the police department to check.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by JB
05.10.12 - 7:21 pm


You are absolutely correct...I was going off of what other officers have said. Incidentally the Bike Oven also stated that they did not notice a serial number. The bike oven also had no solid paperwork to document the transaction and they could not unequivically state that the bike was not stolen...only that they believed the donar to be legitimate. While Andy and Harv are nice guys thier belief does not constitute evidence sufficient to forgoe an nvestigation.

All that being said here is the skinny.

I contacted the manufacturer and they advised that every frame has a serial stamped on the bottom bracket opposite the gear. I went to physically examine the bicycle for myself and found the serial number where the manufacturer had indicated. It was faint, but it was there....and it did not match the serial number of the bike that was reported stolen. I have already spoken to Chris and am making arrangements to have his bike returned.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.10.12 - 7:36 pm


Chris just posted some really good news on Facebook. Sounds like this will be over tomorrow and hopefully he'll have his bike for the weekend.

05.10.12 - 7:58 pm



05.10.12 - 8:04 pm


Thanks for your diligence on this.
It is certainly a great thing that you were able to solve this mystery and that Chris is getting his bike back.

I certainly don't blame your colleagues or anybody else for not seeing the serial number.
But absent, any evidence that a number had physically been removed it was inappropriate for the bike to be seized.

The logic that some information you got from the distributor 2 weeks after the bike was seized justifies the seizure just doesn't hold up.

I hope you can admit, that the primary reason this was mis-handled, is that the officers involved thought that this bike was the private property of a fellow officer and barring any real evidence, they erred on the side of taking chris' bike.

Anybody who would have taken the time and effort you made, could have immediately (or at least within 24 hours) done the investigation you did.

Be honest, if you add up your time on the phone with On-One and the time it took you to ferret out the faint number, does it add it to even an hour?

You probably spent more time fielding questions here than you did cracking this case.

Don't get me wrong, I think its a really good investment for LAPD to have you here, without your help this could have ended in a lot more wasted time, money, and community capital for everybody.

I would like for you to acknowledge, that a removed serial number is very likely going to be visually detectable ... more so on a bike that has the original paint and decals.

And that while multiple witnesses attested to the fact that there was no indication for a removed serial number ... you and other officers preferred to abide the explanation that the lack of a visible serial number means a bike was altered, even without any visual evidence to support that contention.

I presume that the department doesn't have a list of every single bike manufacturer that has ever released a bicycle without a serial number, so this business of taking bikes that have no serial number and no evidence that a serial number has been removed is indefensible.

We all know this never would have happened if an officer hadn't lost personal property in a botched sting.

Speaking of something like this might be a worthwhile evidence if your co-workers are using your own bikes to nab bike thieves.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.10.12 - 8:41 pm


Well certainly this could have been resolved much quicker...but keep in mind that I do not have a caseload like area detectives do. So while it took me less than an hour...due to my position as liaison it was a priority and at the top of my list...vs a detective who has to prioritize assaults and more serious crimes. To be fair to the detectives, very few people have a true grasp of just how much they have on their plate. It's why I never even considered being a detective.

Information received from the manufacturer two weeks later in no way played a part in the original seizure. The perceived lack of a serial number on a frame that should have a serial number (based on the original police report) was what triggered the siezure.

I think that regardless of who was making a claim on the bike...if the officers missed the serial number they would have taken custody of the bike. The reason for this is simple liability. If officers fail to take the bike and it can not be located at a later time, the Department would be considered negligent and the person making the claim would absolutely hold the Department liable....wouldn't you?

No we do not have a list of manufacturers. It would be an oddity however if a manufacturer stamps some bikes but not others. The fact that one On-One bike has a number (like the one listed in the report) is reasonable cause to believe every On-One should have one. It's absence, even without evidence of tampering, is cause to suspect it of being stolen.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.10.12 - 10:24 pm



Good work, Krumer.

Thanks for the follow through on Chris' frame, and thanks for the clarification reply above.


responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.11.12 - 8:23 am


Sgt. K,
All due respect. But your logic is faulty.
You can not know that every bike with a manufacturers branding on it would have a serial number because 1 bike or almost all of their bikes have serial numbers.

Cinelli has made 100's of thousands of bikes in the last 65 years, of those the vast majority have serial numbers. This bike is an exception

Is this bike subject spontaneous police seizure because Cinili has long made of practice of stamping almost all of it's frames? What happened to the 4th ammendment?

On the other hand, have you ever seen a bike that had the number removed so flawlessly that there was absolutely no visual evidence that the number had been removed?

I genuinely appreciate that your assistance here, but it seems like in this case (and this is an exception for what many of us have experienced working with you) you are doing serious mental gymnastics to try and frame the actions of your fellow officers as being appropriate. None of this has passed the smell test for us from day one.

Based on the photos of the scene, more man hours were spent taking chris' bike in to custody and destroying his lock than were required to prove it never should have been taken in the first place.

Speaking of... Chris' property was destroyed by your department based on a faulty memory, bad hunches, and a lack of attention to detail.

Will he compensated for having his property destroyed?

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.11.12 - 9:04 am


Thanks for hunting this down. But jeez, how gangster to just take this dudes bike like that. Those PD should have been on the many many hit and run cases or perched on streets holding down the speed limit.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.11.12 - 9:31 am


Thanks Sgt. K!

Glad he got his bike back. The officer who stole the bike should be reprimanded, not only for taking the bike, but for not handling this problem quicker. You can say he has a huge caseload, but not too big of a caseload to be snatching bikes off the street.

Sounds this officer could fit right in with the Fullerton Police Gang.

05.11.12 - 5:54 pm


Hi trickmilla,

It's not faulty logic but a strict application of the law....that perhaps you and others might very well want to challenge. Assuming the bike did not have a serial number the actions of the officers would have absolutely been appropriate and legally justified. No gymnastics, or summersaults required :) I am in no way saying that every bike w/o a serial number is stolen...I am only saying that every bike w/o a serial number may be subject to seizure based on the law. In practice this is rarely an issue and only became one because there was a competing claim of ownership. The 4th amendment protects you from unreasonable seizures of property/person...but reasonableness is at times subjective. I urge anyone that is unhappy with penal code section 537e to advocate for it's change.

Actually Chris can put in a request for compensation for his destroyed lock. I will find the paperwork and forward it to him.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.11.12 - 6:14 pm


Different folks....the guys that actually took custody of the bike were patrol guys....the one handling the case is a detective. The guys in patrol show when you call 911 and have no caseload. The investigator gets it the nextbday....along with a dozen or so other investigations from the night before. To be frank this bike could have potentially languished for a few more weeks.

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by revolution
05.11.12 - 6:18 pm


Its not the law that is the problem its the interpretation and application of the law by your fellow officers.

For there to be evidence of a crime under this law there would need to be evidence of a "removed" serial number.

There was no such evidence.

The absence of the number does not imply a crime, as bike stamping is not universal nor required.

If you'd seen or had a record cases of expertly removed serial numbers on bike that could pass a close visual inspection, that would be something ... but apparently LAPD thinks that there are Harry Potter bike thieves that can just make a serial number *poof* disappear without a trace.


I know you got to defend your buddies,
So I'll let it go, but I hope somebody makes an effort to have some accountability here.
because what happened to Chris is just a slightly softer version of the gangster tactics LAPD has been infamous for, for decades.

Had he owned the oddball On-One frame with no markings or none that you could find, he would have lost his bike forever.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.11.12 - 7:41 pm


Let's assume you built a custom bike that never had a serial number....and someone steals it. You make a report. The thief changes one or two components and claims it as his own. You see the bike a month or a year later, recognize your handy work and call the police. They show up and see that it is locked up and the other party has the key. The thief claims that it is his and even produces a reciept for the components he bought. There is no evidence that a serial number was removed. What would you expect the police to do to safeguard your interests? Remember that the other party is under no legal obligation to even provide a name. If you were to advocate for a change in the law how would you address this type of situation?

I think you identified a valid problem...personal property subject to police seizure...what is your proposed solution to address the above in a way that balances the interests of all parties in a more fair manner?

Sgt. David Krumer
responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.11.12 - 8:58 pm


What do you do? ... WHAT DO YOU DO?

responding to a comment by trickmilla
05.12.12 - 12:01 am


I think it is time to bottom-line this case. We need to know what to do if we acquire a bike with no serial number. I propose we (as individuals) put our own number on such a bike. If the bike had no original serial number, adding a number would not be "altering" as there would be nothing to alter, other than a blank space on the frame. Since official LAPD policy is to NOT register bikes, the bike could be registered with a national bike I.D. system, or not, at the discretion of the owner, once a number has been stamped.
How about the last four digits of your Califonia I.D. number plus an alpha character to provide for multiple bikes?
Harbor Freight tools has a set of number and letter punches about the correct size for bike numbers. Item number 800, $7.99.
That still leaves the problem of what L.A. bike collectives (the Kitchen, the Oven, Bikerowave, etc) should do. Do we take a hacksaw and cut up frames with no numbers? Do we stamp our own numbers? This is a significant issue as the Bike Oven sees about 20% of its donated bikes with no numbers. Note that there may be a number on either the head badge or rear drop out that is a date code and not a unique number.

05.12.12 - 11:02 am


Sounds like judgement was colored by the relative rarity of the frame, too. I had a nice little Inbred a few years ago - could it have been exactly 3 YEARS AGO??? (insert thunderclap). Just glad you got your ride back - shame to think of getting punished for having a unique bike. That being said, I had an Alpinestars Al-Mega in the 90's and when that was stolen, every bike with elevated chainstays made me want to start busting down doors. Oh, and in case anyone didn't know, "on one" is a UK drugs reference, usually ex, on which it sounds like the officer was when he made the decision to nab the bike.

responding to a comment by Redline
05.12.12 - 11:50 am


if somebody builds a custom bike and does not make any identifying marks and does not register it. i it gets stolen and not traceable then it's on them isn't it?

somewhere in the forums is a story of a guy trying to fence a stolen bareknuckle bike w/o a serial.

the cops were tipped off that the bike was stolen.
approached the guy trying to fence it (possibly the thief) and got the bike back CEO
the guy and helped get it back tI the owner.

the officers in that case said that the lack of a serial number on the bike meant that they could not arrest the guy fencing the bike.

is that lapd policy?

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.13.12 - 1:27 pm


proposed solution, pretty simple: hold lapd officers accountable for having evidence that a serial has been removed from an item before seizing personal property based on that presumption.

any obvious signs of serial number removal or alteration would do including scratches or abrasions, and any sign of body work meant to cover up such alterations.

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.13.12 - 1:42 pm


Glad he's getting his bike back!

05.14.12 - 3:04 pm


I wonder if Black Betty has a serial number on it...

Joe Borfo
05.14.12 - 3:46 pm


Hey Krummer, Thanks for all the work you do for riders and getting Chris his bike back.

05.14.12 - 4:50 pm


THANK YOU Sgt. Krumer! sooooooo much, srsly! Update: I called last friday, and the bike was in a warehouse, that needed to be brought over to the location i will be picking it up at: 180 N Los Angeles st, LA 90012 at 11:00 am. Friday the 18th at 11:00 am is the earliest i can grab it. I will be there!

Also, much thanks to Andy, Harv, and everyone else that has been involved, offered help, etc. Can't wait...

responding to a comment by Sgt. David Krumer
05.15.12 - 3:05 pm


I know you got to defend your buddies

Face it, it's the man's job. Frankly, I don't envy him.

05.15.12 - 3:53 pm


responding to a comment by PC
05.17.12 - 12:52 pm


trickmilla you are my hero :D

05.17.12 - 7:58 pm


It's pretty awesome that Sgt. Krumer is here to correct the mistakes made by others in the department. I sincerely doubt that Chris would have gotten his bike back at all were it not for Krumer's work.... I would encourage people to fill out this officer commendation form for Sgt. David Krumer:


"Praise the good if you want to see more of it."

05.18.12 - 3:15 pm


I couldn't agree more, Roadblock. Super huge thank you, Sgt Krumer! I will def submit all the praise I can towards your way, I really can't thank u enough!!!!!

Picked up my bike today, everything just the way I left it, except for the WPH stickers they half-scratched off. But that's ok, this bike will hit the hustle ride again soon, and will earn some much deserved replacements.

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!!!!!!!!

responding to a comment by Roadblock
05.18.12 - 4:28 pm


woohoooooooo!! glad you got it back.

responding to a comment by Redline
05.19.12 - 4:16 pm


There is nothing punker then the 1/2 of a WPH sticker the cops didn't scratch off... wear it with pride!

responding to a comment by Redline
05.21.12 - 1:44 am


you are correct, i wear them proudly.

Roadblock, and Sgt. Krumer - i've tried submitting to the link above, but i get an error every time. i'm not sure if i've actually submitte 6+ times already, or it actually hasn't gone through... is anyone else having an issue w this link?

responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.28.12 - 6:21 pm


So, what happens when the dumb detective spots it again on the street and there is no serial number in it again assuming it's stolen? Then what happen? How can the owner prevent this from happening again?

06.28.12 - 9:23 pm


I'm happy you got your bike back brotha. Thank you to Sgt. K. for helping a fellow rider. It was great seeing you about a month ago on CRANK MOB. Hope to see you this weekend on Beastside or at the velodrome. Not sure if I'm gonna make it to LA in time for the velodrome but def going on Beastside.

06.29.12 - 10:06 am


there is a serial number, its just hard to see.
I presume chris would point it out to them.

As for those riding a Bareknuckle or other custom frame.
they are pretty much assed out if a cop want to impound their bike.

responding to a comment by TXBONE
07.3.12 - 1:19 pm



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