Spokane Police officer returns stolen bike to owner

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane Police Department (SPD) recovered a stolen bike that's estimated to have a $6,000 value, arrested a suspect in possession of it, and returned it to its owner. 

On Monday, June 29, SPD was doing routine patrol when they noticed a large group of people under the covered shelter area at Mission Park. When an officer drove up to the area, 6-8 people left the area immediately. 

The officer then noticed that a man was riding away on a red and black Trek bike with full suspension and bright yellow letters on both tires. 

The bike was immediately recognized as the stolen bike from an investigation days prior. The officer turned on emergency lights and sirens and attempted to stop the suspect, later identified as 23-year-old Austin Wicke. He refused to stop, weaved in between houses and even oncoming traffic, and eventually crashed nearby.

The officer advised Wicke he didn't want to use force against him and gave several warnings with a taser. Wicke eventually complied and was taken into custody.

When asked by SPD where he acquired the bike, Wicke told the officer he "traded it for some dope from some tweaker."

SPD discovered a pair of bolt cutters and a baggy of a white crystal substance that tested presumptive positive for methamphetamine.

Wicke was transported to jail where he was booked for first-degree possession of stolen property and possession of a controlled substance. 

The bike was subsequently returned to the owner.