“We’re particularly gutted about both the bike and the laptop”


“Dear PoPville,

My house up on 14th and Quincy NW was recently robbed while all me and my roommates were asleep. The robber(s) ended up ripping the security bars off of a first floor window and got in through there. We think it must have been a single person, as pretty much only a bike and laptop was stolen. We’ve contacted police and are keeping a vigilant watch on craigslist and the MPD lost and found. Figured we’d appeal the the PoPville as well!

We’re particularly gutted about both the bike and the laptop. The laptop, which is a mid-2009 macbook in a white hard shell incase branded case belongs to my roommate. This laptop had all my roommates school work and photos on it, which she had not backed up.

The bike is a 2014 Felt Z85 that I bought for the purposes of the Bike to the Beach charity ride. It’s more or less brand new and is pretty much the stock configuration from when I got it from bicyclespace. The only unique identifiers would be the black and red Ibera bottle cages and the shimano clipless pedals.The left side of the top tube also has some light scratches on it from a fall.

If anyone sees the laptop or bike, please get in touch with me at dbmaydoney(at)gmail.com. I will buy anyone who helps recover the bike/laptop all the beers!”

14 Comment

  • Sorry for your loss. It sounds really scary, and hope you get your stuff back.
    That said, between reading this and the lost iPhone the other day, backup your data folks! Even if you don’t put it in the cloud or have a fancy network storage box, external hard drives are crazy cheap. Heck, a laptop of that vintage you could probably fit a full Time Machine backup on decent sized thumb drive.

  • HaileUnlikely

    Damn, that sucks. I’m sorry to hear about this. Just out of curiosity, how were the security bars ripped off? Were they visibly loose in a way that would have been apparent to somebody just walking by and looking at them? Was there significant damage to the bars and/or house? Did they unscrew them and remove them cleanly? The idea that somebody could pull that off without waking you guys up scares the hell out of me.

    • Apparently the bars weren’t fully screwed into the studs of the house. So, they basically pulled on them enough to slip between the bars and the window and sneak in that way. No one would have necessarily known that they got through the bars if it wasn’t for some minor damage to the house’s siding that left a pile of vinyl splinters on the back porch. MPD seemed to think it wouldn’t have necessarily woke us up since they only pulled the bars enough to squeeze a body through. Fortunately, our landlord was able to fix everything and we’ve since got new locks for all the doors for the house and we’re looking into getting alarms for the windows as well.

      As for the noise, our house lives between two construction sites and is in earshot of Red Derby, Lyman’s, and the many fire trucks that come out of the Columbia Heights fire station on 14th. There were also some parties in the neighborhood that night. Suffice it to say, we’ve all trained ourselves to become deep sleepers. At this point, I could probably get a restful night sleep while having someone jack hammering in my bedroom.

      • You don’t necessarily need window sensors. You could just get a small camera style alarm that plugs into WiFi. It can be setup to detect motion in designated areas and alert your or the police (depending on the model).

    • i am not the OP but had something like this happen to me years ago. While my roommates and I were out of the house someone used a crowbar to pry the security bars off the back window. My one roommate was only gone about half and hour so the thief was able to do it quickly and quietly (neighbors were home). The police officer who responded said that its pretty easy to pry the older bars off. Enough pressure and they pop right off.

    • justinbc

      In many homes they’re just screwed on. All you need is a drill.

    • sometimes if the window is in bad shape (like dry rot), they’ll actually use the bar to pull the whole window out. A cop told me this when they came for a break-in at my last apartment. That didn’t happen to me, but they did pop our door gate by compressing it with a long 2×4 as a lever, until the lock popped.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Man, I love those Macbooks with the white hard shell. I hope you find your stuff.

  • I’m so sorry this happened. I used to live at 14th and Quincy a couple years back. Scary stuff. Glad you weren’t hurt.

  • Any chance you (or Bicycle Space) has your bike’s serial number?

    • Yeah! I had it handy when the cops came and was able to get bicyclespace to send me a copy of the receipt with the serial on it. Bicyclespace’s praises can’t be sung enough. They’ll definitely be supplying my next bike if I can’t find the one that was stolen.

  • I feel for you guys and will definitely keep my eyes open for the bike. I’d recommend to anyone reading on here to spend $199 on a Dropcam even if you live in a secured condo/apartment. Many criminals have been identified through Dropcams.

  • Check out the DC Used Bicycle Facebook group and the DC Lost/Stolen Bicycle Facebook group. I’d suggest posting photos of the bike and the serial number in both. A lot of local bike shop mechanics/employees, and other local bike enthusiasts are on there. They pretty actively keep an eye out for anything posted.

  • I feel your pain, as a driver of a 2013 Z85. I can’t imagine. I’ll keep an eye out.

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