A suspect has been arrested and some expensive two-wheel merchandise has been returned to a North Park bike shop hit by a burglar last month.
The burglary was the second in a matter of months at Adams Avenue Bicycles. Thousands of dollars worth of bikes were taken, but two of the most expensive rigs were back with the shop owner on Friday.
The suspect, 38-year-old Stephanie Houseman, was arrested Dec. 27 in connection with the theft, according to San Diego Police Department Sgt. Michael Tansey.
Houseman is being charged with felony receipt of stolen property valued in excess of $950. She also violated parole, Sgt. Tansey said. She is due in court Jan. 14.
Shop owner Chuck Cofer said the merchandise returned to him is valued at over $6,000 and two bikes are still missing. The recovery brought a huge smile to the face of a man whose shop has been burglarized twice in the 14 months he's owned it.
"Cycling in our shop has a real small family feel and a lot of friends," Cofer said. "Bike thieves going to jail is just super satisfying really as satisfying as getting my financial investment back."
It took five thieves about two-and-a-half minutes to snatch four bikes from the shop, two of which were hanging from the ceiling.
After a few days with no arrests, Cofer's luck took a turn when a loyal customer found the bike descriptions on the "Stolen Bike San Diego" Facebook page and plugged them into an Ebay search. A match led to the recovery of both these bikes and the arrest of one of the suspects. Four are still outstanding.
Cofer was first notified of the burglary at his shop by his alarm company, as well as phone calls from customers who noticed the shattered glass on their early morning walks.
"It's pretty crushing," Cofer told NBC 7 in the wake of the discovery.
San Diego Police took a report and collected some evidence and Cofer is reviewing surveillance footage to see if it provides any valuable clues, but he knows from past experience that he likely won't be able to recoup his losses.
The burglars sawed through metal bars on a security door and then smashed the glass of the front door before making entry into the bike shop.
Cofer, who purchased Adams Avenue Bicycles a little over a year ago, says the previous owner also experienced a handful of burglaries.