Police: 'Bike bandit' caught on camera in Brownstown Township

Wayne County's Downriver communities seek thief on bike who police say is responsible for dozens of break-ins

By Shawn Ley - Reporter

BROWNSTOWN TOWNSHIP, Mich. - It looks comical: A 6-foot-2 man riding a kid's bike around the streets of three downriver communities stands out to many people that have seen him. 

Police said he is responsible for more than a dozen burglaries and home invasions during the past few weeks in Woodhaven, Brownstown Township and Trenton.

Multiple Downriver police agencies are after the "bicycle bandit" and on Thursday Local 4 obtained security camera footage of the man on the bike who police say is the burglar.

The images were captured Monday afternoon when he was on his way to break into a home on Lana Drive in Brownstown Township, police said.

The man parked his bike on the street and walked around the home with a brick in his hand. A next-door neighbor said the man said "hi," and then proceeded to bash the side door in.

The neighbor did not see the break-in or hear it and said he feels terrible for not reporting the suspicious person carrying a brick behind a home.

The home belongs to Bill Dagger. He said he finds it odd that the burglar tried to steal a large safe inside his home.

"He must not be too bright," said Dagger.

Brownstown Township Police Lt. Robert Grant is mystified that a grown man on a bike can burglarize so many homes and get away with it.

"Somebody must see him get on this bike and commit these crimes," Grant said.

Grant has line-ups prepared. He and detectives are looking for more security camera footage of the man to get a better look at him. He believes the moment someone sees the images of the bandit on Local 4, they will instantly recognize him.

Reward offered for bike bandit's arrest:

There is a $1,000 Crime Stoppers reward for anyone with information leading to an arrest. Call 800-SPEAK-UP.

Police are concerned that the combination of scared and frustrated homeowners coming face-to-face with a man kicking in their door would make for a violent confrontation.

"We have to get this guy and put an end to this crime spree," Grant said.

-- The man has been seen peeking into windows on early mornings and knocking on doors all hours of the day and night. If he believes the homeowner is at work, he will kick in the door and ransack the house, taking computers, jewelry and guns.

Copyright 2012 by ClickOnDetroit.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.