KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Employees at one metro nonprofit want to know who ripped them off.
Bike Walk KC's directors said someone stole five expensive bicycles from them during the night. Photos show those criminals went to great lengths to steal those bikes.
When staff members arrived at Bike Walk KC on Monday morning, something was missing. The nonprofit bike-share program keeps 120 fleet bicycles on hand, and they’re used to teach bicycle safety at local schools.
Maggie Green, Bike Walk KC's director of programs, said the windows on her company’s van were smashed, and crooks took five of those expensive sets of wheels. Photos show the rock used to smash the front and rear windows on that van was still there inside the van, parked outside Bike Walk KC's office at 33rd and Gillham.
"I'll bet hundreds of kids have ridden this bike," Green told FOX4.
The bike Green demonstrated was the only one remaining in the van after the robbery. Green said five others, which cost $350 apiece, were gone.
"It is a bummer, definitely," Green said.
Bike Walk KC shared video that shows the BLAST program in action, using those bikes to teach local kids to ride safely. Green said the program often takes those bicycles to local schools and community centers, often conducting their instructional program for less-fortunate children.
The $1,800 that will be needed to replace the bikes isn't money the nonprofit keeps lying around.
"We bought the bikes initially thanks to grant money, so it's hard to replace them if they do get stolen. We use them year in and year out. We're constantly maintaining them," Green said Monday afternoon.
"We're kind of at a loss of these five bikes that would be used by students in program," Green said. "If we get the bikes back, allow us to keep doing the program without any hiccups."
Green said the real victims are the kids who depend on these bikes. The bicycles are expensive, and the nonprofit will need to buy more quickly since summertime is prime time for riders. Green also said if the crooks had needed a bike of their own, the agency would have helped them get one for free, or close to it.
If you know who's behind this bicycle theft, please call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS.