Motorcycle crime

Plenary on 2017-07-06
Session date: 
July 6, 2017
Question By: 
Andrew Dismore
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


On Wednesday 3rd May my constituent Neil Morgenstern had his motorbike stolen in West Hampstead. He informed the police around 9:35pm and because the vehicle had a tracker, the tracker company was able to locate exactly where it was, which was in Kentish Town. Although the location was in the same road as a police station, no police officer attended the location, where Mr Morgenstern waited for about an hour. Then close to 11pm the gate behind which it was locked was opened and a rider came out on it and drove off towards a location in Holloway. Mr Morgenstern made his way to Kentish Town Road and flagged down a police officer, but before they proceeded to the location they took down details, then took a roundabout route by which time it appears that the tracker had been neutralised by breaking its antenna. 

The motorbike was photographed the next day in Belsize Park where it was being used to commit more crime, in particular there were two people riding on it attempting to steal more motorcycles. Again the police were called, during the daytime, and took over 30 minutes to show up. At this point the criminals simply signalled to the police and drove off.

How are we to deal with moped and motorcycle theft and moped and motorcycle enabled crime and how are we to persuaded people of the importance of tracking devices after such a poor response?


Answer for Motorcycle crime

Answer for Motorcycle crime

Answered By: 
The Mayor

The response Mr Morgenstern received was not as expected, when considering the location and the information. The MPS apologise for that and have made contact with Mr Morgenstern to re-iterate that fact and are reminding staff of expectations when live tracking information is flagged to police. In terms of the following day’s activity, the response was correct as it was an “S” graded call (respond within 1 hour) and on police attendance the moped made off and pursuit was not initiated due to the circumstances at the time. There is a comprehensive tactical and strategic response under Operation Venice to deal with these matters, and there have been a number of successes of recovery and arrest in similar circumstances, which we advertise to the public. In addition, tracking devices are one of many ways motorcycle owners can limit the appeal of their vehicle to thieves, and MOPAC are continuing to explore how this technology can be further harnessed to protect vehicles. As highlighted by the Met’s recently launched Be Safe campaign, the more visible the security on a vehicle, the less visible it is to thieves who are looking for quick and easy opportunities. Whilst a tracking device will help locate a motorcycle once stolen, the Met are recommending that owners consider locking both the front and back wheels of their vehicles to prevent theft in the first place.