A 31-year-old homeless man was arrested at 3:17 pm on Thursday, Dec. 5 after being caught stealing a bicycle that was under surveillance as part of a sting operation.
On this day, officers of the Santa Monica Police Department were dressed in plain clothes and driving unmarked vehicles as they set up an anti-theft operation focused on bicycle thefts.
One of the officers parked a bicycle outside a commercial building located in the 600 block of Wilshire Boulevard, then casually strolled away and into the building in a way that did not give any indication that he was a police officer involved in a sting.
The other officers kept watch in an unobtrusive fashion from a nearby location.
A few moments later the officers noticed a pair of suspects approach the bicycle.
One of these suspects continued past the bicycle but the second suspect stopped a few feet away from the bicycle, looked around the area in a suspicious manner, and then mounted the bicycle and began to ride it southbound off the sidewalk and onto Wilshire Boulevard.
The undercover officers then radioed other units positioned in the area and those units apprehended the suspect on the bicycle at the intersection of 10th Street and Wilshire Boulevard.
This man was arrested and charged with grand theft and a probation violation. Bail was not granted.
Editor’s Note: These reports are part of a regular police coverage series entitled “Alert Police Blotter” (APB), which injects some minor editorial into certain police activities in Santa Monica. Not all of The Mirror’s coverage of incidents involving police are portrayed in this manner. More serious crimes and police-related activities are regularly reported without editorial in the pages of the Santa Monica Mirror and its website, smmirror.com.