Mission Beach residents say thieves prowling area by boat

SAN DIEGO - Some residents in Mission Beach say they're on the lookout for thieves who make their approach and exit by boat.

In November, Mandi Marcus went on vacation, and when she returned, she discovered her pink bike was missing.

She posted a description on Nextdoor.com, a private social network for neighborhoods.

For months, she heard nothing. And then, suddenly, she had her bike back.

"It definitely meant a lot to get her back," said Marcus.

A neighbor less than a mile away posted he had seen the bike chained to a metal boat tie-up on the beach in Bonita Cove.

That neighbor was Bob Ruane, the past president of the Mission Beach Town Council. He directed Marcus to the bike and described one possible culprit.

"He said people would pull up on their boats, on the shore, and wander the neighborhoods," said Marcus.

"They're kind of creepy," said resident Salli Anne Zamudio.

Some neighbors 10News spoke with believe some of the boaters are prowling the area and stealing items.

"And then leave, or leave behind what they couldn't take with them," said Zamudio.

That includes items left near the tie-up, like skateboards and bikes.

Turns out, the sight of something like a bike chained to the tie-up is not all that unusual.

Zamudio found a different bike chained to the tie-up a month ago.

"This is the bicycle I found," said Zamudio, as she took 10News to a side enclosure.

She took the bike and left a note, but she has yet to find the owner.

Police say theft by boat has happened in the past, as one advantage is a getaway route that's not well lit.

One sergeant told 10News she'll be taking a closer look at these incidents.

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