LA MESA, Calif. - A bike owner is now on a mission to find a suspected thief after surveillance video revealed a heart-pounding surprise.
Mountain biking instructor Daniel Pitard loves his ride.
"It's a custom-build and my pride and joy," said Pitard.
But after deciding to go for a ride on Wednesday, his heart fell.
"I went to remove the bike from the back of car and noticed the lock was broken. It fell off my hand," said Pitard.
Upon checking the surveillance video mounted on his house near downtown La Mesa, his heart started racing.
"Definitely a moment of panic; feeling pretty violated," said Pitard.
Earlier that day at around 5 a.m., video captured a man near the bike, holding something wrapped in a blanket.
"He looks around and then removes the bolt cutters from the blanket," said Pitard.
Moments later, the lock is cut.
"As he walks off, I was leaving the house to go to work. [I'm] assuming he heard me; [he] may have been scared off," said Pitard.
Pitard's bike wasn't taken, but hours earlier, two others in the area reported on the app Nextdoor that their bikes were grabbed in the dark, along with two others a farther away.
Pitard has posted the images across social media.
He's shared several leads with police, and he's hoping neighbors get a good lock at the face.
"I hate thieves and definitely would like him to be caught," said Pitard.
La Mesa police say they are looking into possible ties other cases, but they have not confirmed a link.
Anyone with information on the case is asked to call La Mesa Police at 619-667-1400.