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Spotted on a 545 today, grifter attempting to steal a bicycle, possibly laptop

On the 545 heading downtown around 6:30-7pm, noticed a overweight lady, mid-forties with yellow & black bags asking dumb questions in an exaggerated drawl about someone’s laptop “Oh, excuse me, I’m just trying to learn about computers, what kind is that? Does it get internets? Does it run on solar power? How does a battery work?”

Didn’t really set off any flags, but then someone got off the bus, and she talked a little to herself on her cell, then she approached the bus driver and told him that some guy in a purple shirt just called her to say that he got off at the wrong stop and forgot his bicycle. It was a newish bike, and I don’t recall anyone wearing a biking uniform getting off at the previous stop.

The lady told the bus driver that the previous guy wanted her to take the bike, and that she’d give him her name and everything. The bus driver told her no, that she could not take the bike if she didn’t own it, that it would go to the station in lost & found, and asked her to call him back and tell the guy what would happen. She claimed she did not have the guy (who just called her)’s number and didn’t know his name, the bus driver retorted that she could just use her phone’s caller ID to reach him. She let loose a series of fake giggles and claimed she did not know how to use her phone.

After the bus driver told her NO for the umpteenth time and she sat down fuming, the ACTUAL owner of the bike (not the person the lady was claiming to know) came forward to get off at his stop. He wrote up a short report, giving his ID, contact #, and where he purchased the bike to the driver.

I’d keep an eye out for this or a similar scam.

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3 thoughts on “Spotted on a 545 today, grifter attempting to steal a bicycle, possibly laptop” -- All CHS Comments are held for moderation before publishing

  1. > The bus driver told her no, that she could not take the bus if she didn’t own it

    Darn, I’ve always wanted a Sound Transit bus of my own.

  2. A similar thing happened to me a couple months ago, on a late-nite 124. We pulled into Tukwila Station, and a young man came up to the bus driver, and quickly said “my friend left his bike on the bus”. The driver said “ok…” and with that the kid started to unhook my bike. I got up and reminded the driver that i’d just got on 5 minutes ago, with that same bike. The driver claimed ignorance but at least the kid stopped what he was doing and walked away. I’ve always kept a close on my bike, now even more so.