Pinched POPcycle bike hot no longer; police recover bike in alley

Rachel Sprinkle-Strong is no longer in shock, no longer without a bike and thanks to a flood of public support, has no doubts there are plenty of good people in this world.

But that does not include the thief who broke into her midtown garage — and broke three locks to get at her specially made ice cream bike — and made off with the $2,000 eye-catching rig early Saturday.

A neighbor’s security camera caught a portion of the heist. It’s a good bet the thief was not a member of Mensa. This is an unusual bike with a highly specific purpose — and it has the company’s logo emblazened on the sides of the large ice chest.

“I was upset. I kept thinking, ‘Did someone target this?’” Sprinkle-Strong told me upon learning her bike was gone. “I was shocked.”

Then Channel 13 news did a story. Many mobilized support once folks learned via social media that the bike was gone and the owner was without the centerpiece of her livelihood.

Alert police officers, aware of the bike from the TV report, recovered it Sunday afternoon in an alley in Del Paso Heights. The only things missing were the metal pedals, a cup holder and the headlight.

Before that, movements were already afoot via social media to help Sprinkle-Strong get a new bike.

“It was wonderful,” she said of the support. “This negative experience was completely offset by the outpouring of support I received from this.”

Anyone who has had a bike stolen (myself included) knows how she felt. We’re thrilled this story has a happy ending.

For more on her business, which sells handcrafted ice cream in many flavors, visit her website here.