Police: ‘Your bike’s been stolen - by us’

Published: 18 January 2010

Muddled police broke into an MCN reader’s garage, took his motorcycle, then contacted him to say they’d recovered it from thieves. 

Steve Hamer, 35, from Ystrad Mynach in Wales, was surprised when an officer told him his beloved Ducati 750 Supersport had been recovered in a raid.

Until that moment he’d had no idea it had been stolen. But he was even more surprised when police called back a few days later to admit the raid had been on his own lock-up, two miles from his home. 

It meant the huge holes in the lock-up door, which Hamer assumed were the work of the “thieves”, had actually been put there by officers.

Hamer, a training manager for a supermarket, explained: “On December 22 I got a note through my door asking me to ring an officer because my bike had been stolen.

"When I did, I was told: ‘But the good news is we raided a property this morning and recovered it.’

“The officer asked me when I’d seen it last and I gave him the address of my lock-up but the penny apparently didn’t drop.

“I spent Christmas believing my bike had been stolen and wondering what state it was in but not able to collect it because of inches of snow and my busy work schedule over the period.

“Then I got another phone call and an officer said: ‘It looks like we’ve made a mistake. We’ve just been through the logs and found that it was your lock-up we took the bike from.”

According to Hamer, the only explanation Gwent Police have offered for the cock-up is that they were acting on an “anonymous tip-off” the garage contained stolen property.

“What worries me is that they went ahead and raided it apparently without investigating first,” he said.

A force spokesman said: “Gwent Police was acting on intelligence gathered when executing the warrant and has since made every effort to minimise disruption to the owner whilst ensuring the security and safe return of the vehicle."

Read how Hamer was told he must pay to get his bike back in MCN’s January 13 issue.