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Six bicycles ripped off locally

Loss is estimated at more than $16,000
by: Vern Uyetake, Gordon Haber, owner of Lakeside Bicycles on North State Street, shows a limited edition Bianchi bicycle named for cyclist Danilo DiLuca. One like it was among six bikes stolen from his shop Friday, Oct. 24.

Six bicycles worth more than $16,000 were taken from a bike shop in Lake Oswego Friday.

Gordon Haber, owner of Lakeside Bicycles at 428 N. State Street, said the burglary is the first of its kind in 12 years of business.

The bikes were stolen from a rack behind the shop while employees were moving them from inside the store to an attached warehouse at approximately 5 p.m.

All of the bicycles belonged to customers that had brought them to Lakeside Bicycles for repairs.

'It's a rather daring theft because the mechanics are back there all the time,' said Haber.

He said the shop has been criticized because the bicycles were not locked at the time of the theft. Haber said the bicycles were unattended for about 10 or 15 minutes while employees moved them.

'Our position is that we are responsible for this,' said Haber. 'We contacted all of the owners and we're offering to make good on the loss in every case.'

Though insurance covers the replacement value of the bicycles, Haber said he has opted to replace all of them with current models or comparable new bikes.

'Our hope is that our willingness to accept responsibility and correct the situation on behalf of our customers will be sufficient expression of our remorse,' he said. 'The cost is not as much a loss as the cost of good name.'

Haber has e-mailed and faxed a list of stolen bicycles to nearby bike shops, Web sites and bike stores and is closely monitoring online sites such as Craigslist and eBay.

The bikes were individually valued between $600 and $8,000 to $10,000.

One had sentimental value: It was a gift from the customer's father 30 years prior.

The more valuable bikes included a limited edition Bianchi named for cyclist Danilo DiLuca and an 'enormous' Specialized mountain bike made for a tall customer.

Haber said he has changed storage methods at Lakeside Bicycles and plans to add lighting and surveillance video as a result of the thefts.