Bikers complain about crime, city leaders jump into action - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Bikers complain about crime, city leaders jump into action

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You can still see the passenger side cracks and busted back window from Wednesday's break in.  Ryan Tester witnessed the crime while riding back to his SUV at Jermain Park.

"Nothing was was taken because there was nothing in there in the first place which is kind of sad because it was damaged for nothing," says Tester.

It was the second crime near the bike trail this week.   On Monday*, two other riders were robbed at gunpoint for their bikes not far from Toledo Hospital.   Members of Toledo Free Ride, a group that maintains and promotes the trail, were furious.  The 6.4-mile trail is located in Ottawa and Jermain parks.

"It was kind of scary that this kind of brazen activity would take place here in Toledo in the daylight," says another member, Tim Barrett.

They immediately reached out to the city for answers and solutions to the growing crime problem.   They were surprised how quickly leaders responded.

"One of the things we hired the mayor to do is to keep us safe and secure along with the police, those are the primary jobs of our government," says Barrett.

A spokesperson from Mayor Collins' office reported the teen suspects who stole the bikes at gunpoint were located and charged just a day later. The police department also assigned two officers to patrol the parks, trail and surrounding areas on bikes.

"It still feels safe out here," says another rider, Norlan Buno.  "But it's good to know the cops are here to hold the premises down."

The regular riders say they're more likely to leave valuables at home, but aren't afraid of the park.  The trail is their little getaway from everyday life.   And thanks to city and police action, their rides feel safe once again.

"It's not going to stop me from coming out," says Ryan. "It's a nice place, it's convenient and close to home."

"I couldn't be more pleased with the mayor's response and just an awesome opportunity for us to turn this around and keep it safe for everybody," says Barrett.

*An earlier version said Tuesday.  The correct date is Monday, July 7.
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