Student bike stolen, cameras unhelpful

By Max Miranda

East Los Angeles College student Steven Adamo got his electric bike stolen at the parking structure S4 on September 15. 

Adamo said he went around the southeast part of campus looking for a bike rack to lock his bike but couldn’t find one.

As a solution, he went to the parking structure on Floral Drive and Collegian Avenue and chained his bike to the gate by the stairwell. 

Adamo saw a camera where he parked his bike so he knew that it would be safe to park there.

Adamo went to his class, and when his class was over, he noticed that his bike was missing. He said the incident may have happened between 9:30-11:30 a.m. since that was the time he was in class.

At first, Adamo thought that he wasn’t supposed to park his bike there and that it got towed. But he found the lock in the bushes by the sidewalk, mid-way between the parking structure and the Vincent Price Art Museum.

Adamo saw a sheriff’s patrol unit parked by the VPAM and alerted the two deputies inside the vehicle that his bike was stolen. 

Later in the day, Adamo checked back in with the sheriff’s office on campus later in the day to make a report. 

He said the deputy who was riding as a passenger remembered Adamo from earlier, and told him there was nothing they could do because the camera where Adamo parked his bike wasn’t working.

Adamo said the deputy told him that not many students ride bikes to school, but the deputy thinks that students would if there were more places to safely park them during class.

Adamo wasn’t able to retrieve his bike. 

“It was an electric bike, so I was able to take it from school, back home and even on the Metro to visit family around LA County. It’s like getting my car stolen for somebody who relies on those,” Adamo said.

Adamo thinks that there should be more bike racks on campus. 

“The closest Metro station is still at least a mile away, so a bike was the best way to maneuver my daily tasks while still taking advantage of public transit. My professor also offered students if they’d be willing to carpool. So I’m glad to have that support at ELAC,” Adamo said.

Campus News reporter Priscilla Hernandez asked Deputy Li if the cameras have still been off since the bike was stolen. 

Li said that the sheriff’s office does not deal with the cameras or when they malfunction. Ultimately it is up to the school on what they decide to do with the cameras.

“With bikes, the cameras aren’t working and we don’t get good angles. That’s what makes it hard to resolve these problems. The best we can do is have the bike’s serial number so we can start an investigation,” Li said.

Hernandez asked Officer Moreno if there was a policy the department has to follow when a bike is reported stolen.

“There is no policy because the campus is open. So when parking any type of transportation, therefore it becomes a park at your own risk,” Moreno said.

The deputies refused to give their first names. 

Full disclosure, Steven Adamo is part of the Campus News staff.

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