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OPD Warns Motorcycle Theft Rate on the Rise

Oceanside CA— Motorcycle thefts in San Diego County have been up for the past several years. In Oceanside the Oceanside Police Department has noticed a surge in motorcycle thefts in the last month. During the month of June 2015 there were 33 vehicles stolen in Oceanside. Of those vehicles, 11 were motorcycles. The problem is magnified when you realize most motorcycles are not recovered. They are either taken out of the country or parted out.

Although the thefts are on the rise in Oceanside, it is not a localized issue. It is a county-wide issue. Especially vulnerable are military personnel, simply because of the number who purchase motorcycles and then park them near the base or in their apartment complexes.

There are really very few ways to steal a motorcycle and get away from the owner’s location with it. The most obvious is to simply defeat the locking mechanism and then ride it away. The other is to simply pick it up and put it into a waiting van, truck, or trailer. Then the thief drives it away and attends to it later at his convenience.

Motorcycle thieves are like other thieves in that they look for a target rich environment. The areas within the City of Oceanside hardest hit by motorcycle thieves are the larger apartment complexes. Most complexes have easy points of entry. Most complexes have lots of motorcycles, which is what attracts motorcycle thieves. These people look for unsecured, or barely secured motorcycles in either darkened or secluded areas.

So what are some strategies motorcycle owners can employ?

  • Always lock your motorcycle. Lock the steering mechanism. Employ a good, strong motorcycle lock. If you use a chain, be sure it is of excellent quality and has a secure anchor.
  • Consider using good wheel locks. But remember, you get what you pay for.
  • Take the time to invest in an anti-theft/recovery device for your motorcycle.
  • Contact the management of your complex and suggest they improve the lighting if you are parking in a dark area.
  • Park in garage or parking structure whenever possible.
  • Contact the management of your complex and suggest that they consider building a parking enclosure. Happy tenants are generally good tenants.
  • Contact the management of your complex and suggest they install video surveillance cameras.

As an example, two years ago a complex in Oceanside built a parking area for motorcycles for its residents who own motorcycles. The number of motorcycle thefts from that complex plummeted. It was an excellent example of partnership between the complex, its residents and the Oceanside Police Department.

Remember! There are no guarantees. There is no one product that works 100% of the time to defeat motorcycle theft. Look after your property. Take the precautions to safely ensure you will not be a victim.