On Monday, June 22nd, at around 9:55 a.m., Roselle Park Police responded to an incident involving a resident calling police after observing two males attempting to steal two bicycles on the property of an apartment complex at 200 West Webster Avenue.
The resident called out to the males who then immediately abandoned one of the bicycles and fled through the apartment complex with the other bicycle. The reportedly two fled through the parking lot where the second bicycle was eventually abandoned.
Another resident who observed the males fleeing through the parking lot followed the pair at a distance on Seaton Avenue and also contacted the police.
Patrolman John Fitzgerald, assisted by Patrolman Mitchell White, located two males walking on foot in the area of Seaton Avenue and Willow Avenue.
Roselle Park Police Detectives then spoke to the witnesses who were able to positively identify the males and locate the bicycles.
The males arrested are identified as Basil Carter-Douglas, age 22, and Justin Claiborne, age 23, both of Roselle.
Mr. Carter-Douglas was charged with Hindering Apprehension (he provided police a fictitious name), Criminal Trespass, and Theft. He was transported to Union County Jail in lieu of $7,500.00 bail. Mr. Claiborne was charged with Criminal Trespass and Theft and was transported to Union County Jail in lieu of $5,000.00 bail.
Although no connection has been established at this time, there has recently been a spike in reported bicycle thefts and abandoned bicycles in the borough.
May 29, 2015 (Friday)
One (1) unsecured bicycle was reported stolen from bike rack at West Webster youth baseball field
June 18, 2015 (Thursday)
One (1) unsecured bicycle was reported stolen from an apartment building parking lot on the 10 block of East Westfield Avenue.
June 19, 2015 (Friday)
One (1) abandoned bicycle was recovered from a sidewalk.
June 21, 2015 (Sunday)
Three (3) unsecured bicycles were reported stolen from a front porch of a residence.
Anyone with information on any of these incidents is asked to contact Roselle Park Police Department (RPPD) at (908) 245-2300.
RPPD also asks that residents always lock their bicycles when leaving them outdoors, even if it is for a few minutes and even if it is in their own back yard or porch. An unsecured bicycle might attract an individual to enter the property in order to take it; many times they will abandon another bicycle to take another. A stolen bicycle can be used by a thief looking to flee an area quickly.
Roselle Park Police requests that residents notify RPPD of any and all suspicious activity.
As a precaution, residents can take a photograph their bicycle(s) – even with a cell phone – and save the photo for easy retrieval. Residents should also take a photo of the serial number, which is usually stamped on the bottom bracket.
Additionally, Roselle Park Borough Codes 3-2.2 and 3-2.3 provide the means by which residents can register their bicycles with the RPPD for one dollar. Residents can contact RPPD at (908) 245-2300 to find out more information.
3-2.2 Registration Required; Attachment of Decal.
No person residing in the Borough shall operate a bicycle upon any public street or other public place within the Borough unless such bicycle has been registered with the Police Department, as evidenced by a registration decal which shall be attached to such bicycle. (1980 Code § 82-2)
3-2.3 Registration Procedure.
a. Every person required under the terms of this section to obtain a registration decal shall apply for and procure the same from the Roselle Park Police Department at a fee of one ($1.00) dollar.
b. The registration decal shall be fastened to the frame of the bicycle in a place to be determined by the Chief of Police. Removal of the decal shall be grounds for revocation of the registration.
c. No person shall willfully or maliciously remove, destroy, mutilate or alter the registration decal during the period for which such decal is operative.
d. Every person shall within ninety (90) days after acquiring a bicycle obtain a registration decal as set forth above. A registration decal shall be valid for as long as the person owns the bicycle. The Police Department shall also issue a registration card to each owner and keep a record of each registration.
e. The Police Department, for identification purposes, shall stamp a number on the frame of the bicycle on which no serial number can be found or on which the original serial number is illegible.
(1980 Code § 82-3; New)