By ANGELO THOMAS DIXON
The crime prevention unit of the Alamo College police department will register bicycles 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday in the mall.
Patrol officer Shane Isbell, coordinator of the event, said the free bicycle registration is for everyone.
“We’ll take a picture of the bicycle and get information about it, like a serial number,” Isbell said. The registration does not extend outside Alamo Colleges, but the Alamo Colleges police department will assist any other law enforcement agency track down a stolen bike by sharing registration information.
The National Bike Registry website also provides these services for a fee of $10 for 10 years or $25 for a 30-year transferrable coverage registration. The registry can be located at www.nationalbikeregistry.com.
The website states that more than 48 percent of bicycle are recovered after being stolen, but only 5 percent are ever returned to there rightful owner because there is no way of determining rightful ownership.
The program in Alamo Colleges is similar to the one instituted at the University of Texas at Austin, but that university requires any student who rides a bike on campus to register it.
Students must provide the bicycle’s serial number and the owner’s college ID number.
Sam Cortez, bicycle coordinator at UT-Austin, said benefits for the program include returning bikes to students if stolen or lost. Also, if a registered bicycle is parked illegally, campus police are able to call the registered bike owner and have it moved before chains and locks are cut.
Registration also can be a theft deterrent, Cortez said. “If a thief see the registration sticker on the bike of the bike, chances are he moves on,” he said.