Suspect of Uptown bicycle thefts arrested
Published: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 15:10
Phillip Lemon, 25, was arrested on Oct. 10 in connection with the string of bicycle thefts on campus.
Since Sept. 21 of this year, five bicycles have been reported stolen on Loyola’s campus.
The warrant issued for Lemon’s arrest was prompted when a student living in the university area discovered a suspicious ad on Craigslist, said Sgt. W.J. Keller of NOPD. When this anonymous student saw an ad about a bicycle for sale on Craigslist, the student met with the seller, Lemon, and realized that the bicycle belonged to the student’s friend, who reported the bicycle missing earlier. After noticing this, the student came to police about the bicycle, according to Keller.
According to Keller, Lemon is a heroin addict and sells the bikes he steals for drug money.
As of Oct. 3, Lemon was wanted by NOPD, according to a university-wide email sent by Capt. Roger Pinac of LUPD.
Prior to his arrest on Oct. 10, Lemon was arrested in 2009 for two possessions of marijuana and one possession of cocaine.
According to a campus-wide email sent on Sept. 24, Loyola’s campus police, Tulane’s campus police and NOPD have had a “significant number of bicycles reported stolen on campus and in the Uptown area.”
Of these five bicycles reported stolen on Loyola’s campus, one has been recovered, said Captain Roger Pinac of LUPD. From the start of the school year to Sept. 21, Pinac said campus police found 16 bicycles improperly secured or unsecured. From Sept. 21 through Oct. 2, Pinac said university police found eight
more bicycles improperly secured or unsecured.
Most of the bicycles stolen since Sept. 21 were secured with a cable lock, according to LUPD’s email. In order to prevent future thefts, Pinac suggests not using cable or chain locks when securing a bicycle because they can be cut with easily concealable cable cutters. He suggests using a U-lock because it’s the most “impossible to defeat.”
Pinac said he also often sees the wrong caliber of lock being used to secure a bicycle.
“Using a $2 lock from Wal-Mart to secure a $900 bike is not going to work,” said Pinac.
Aaren Gordon can be reached at email@example.com
Alex Davis contributed reporting to this story.