La Crosse police officers warn that bike thefts may be on the rise this summer.

Just last month, a Nishiki men’s bike was stolen from Lincoln Middle School’s bike rack on Division Street. Video surveillance caught someone using a bolt cutter to steal the blue-and-black bike, according to the incident report.

“Horseshoe bike locks are harder to defeat than cable locks,” said La Crosse police Capt. Jason Melby.

Police also apprehended two people in early May after authorities say they stole bicycles worth $7,000 from an Iowa couple in the parking lot of the Charmant Hotel.

Officers said both men fled on the bikes they stole and one had “a bolt cutter hanging around his neck.”

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Melby reminded people to register their bikes, a free service that can be done online, and, if you’re from out of town, ask hotel staff if you can store your bike inside.

U-locks, also known as horseshoe bike locks, make it harder for anyone to steal your bike, said Carolyn Dvorak, Wisconsin Bike Fed’s La Crosse ambassador.

Dvorak also recommended locking different parts of your bike to a bike rack: the bike frame, front wheel and back wheel.

Dvorak gave other tips:

  • Avoid leaving expensive bikes on cars or on bike racks for too long.
  • Businesses usually allow bikes in stores as long as they’re not in customers’ way.
  • Speak with local bike stores about the toughest locks and register your bike.

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