Spokane Police officer finds, returns man’s stolen bike worth thousands of dollars

SPOKANE, Wash. — A Spokane man says thieves stole the most expensive thing he owns- a mountain bike worth several thousand dollars. 

Jacob Burggraff never thought he would see it again, and he assumed police wouldn’t be able to find the thief who stole it. 

The stolen item was no average bike. It’s a full carbon fiber mountain bike that retails new around $8,000. Given the price tag, the 23-year-old thief police chased down is now facing felony theft charges. 

“It’s the most expensive thing I own,” said Burggraff. “It’s worth more than the car.” 

Burggraff says the thief smashed his car window to get the mountain bike he planned to ride a few hours later. 

“My bike rack had recently broken and so the bike was sitting inside the car all locked up and they came through at 7:30 in the morning, broke the window out and stole the frame, the wheels and all my bike equipment right out of the car,” said Burggraff. 

That was more than two weeks ago. 

“I was a little hesitant that the police would actually do anything,” said Burggraff. “So I was making posts all over Facebook. You know, there’s a huge bike community here.” 

He ended up calling Crime Check as well. To his surprise, a Spokane Police officer saw Burggraff’s post on Facebook and messaged him directly. 

“Officer Alan Jones actually reached out to me on Facebook and he said ‘hey, you know you’re not in my division but I would love to help, I’ll keep my eye open for it,’” said Burggraff. 

That officer lived up to the promise. On Monday, Officer Jones spotted the unique bike at Mission Park. Police say the suspect, 23-year-old Austin Wicke, tried to get away, riding through oncoming traffic. 

He was arrested several blocks away. 

When asked where he got the bike, police say Wicke told them he “traded it for some dope… from some tweaker.” 

“It’s a very expensive mountain bike. Retails for about $8,000 new,” said Burggraff. 

Officer Jones returned the bike on Monday. Burggraff still can’t believe it found its way home.