Cops tie alleged thief to found bikes

Jason Auslander
The Aspen Times

Snowmass Village police have been able to directly tie a man they believe may be responsible for a spate of bicycle thefts this summer to four and possibly five of those stolen bikes, according to court documents and police.

Police were able to link David Bowman, 54, to a storage facility in Basalt, where they found three bikes Monday, said Snowmass Village Police Chief Brian Olson. Serial numbers on two of those bikes matched two bikes that were stolen from locked car racks in Snowmass Village within a day of each other during Labor Day weekend, he said.

The third bike appears to match another bike that was reported stolen recently, Olson said.

The other two bikes came to the attention of police after a man from the Denver area called Sunday to report that he’d purchased two bikes from Bowman on Aug. 26 after seeing them advertised on Craigslist. The owners of the bikes — which were stolen from Snowmass Village on July 25 and Aug. 3 — later identified them as their property from pictures, the documents state.

Bowman was first arrested early Saturday morning after a Snowmass Village police officer, who was staking out town parking lots in search of bike thieves, allegedly saw him cut a lock securing a bicycle to a car rack and ride the bike away. At that point, he was arrested and charged with felony possession of burglary tools and misdemeanor counts of theft and criminal mischief.

At the time, Bowman was booked into the Pitkin County Jail and posted a $2,500 bond.

However, police amended those counts Tuesday and re-arrested Bowman on suspicion of felony possession of cocaine, felony theft and possession of drug paraphernalia. Bowman again posted a $2,500 bond and was allowed out of jail Tuesday.

The drug counts were filed after police searched Bowman’s 2013 Honda Civic and tested white powder found on a mirror, a razor blade, a small tray and a jeweler’s scale, according to court documents.

Olson said based on eBay receipts found in Bowman’s car, and the alleged bike sales on Craigslist, police plan to ask both eBay and Craigslist for details of Bowman’s postings and sales on those sites.

Police have said 14 bikes were stolen between July 15 and Sept. 19, mainly from locked bike racks on cars parked in Snowmass Village parking lots. Police found burglary tools in Bowman’s car, including bolt cutters, a hacksaw and another cutting tool.

The man who said he purchased the two bikes said he met Bowman in the parking lot of a Lakewood Target about 10 p.m. on Aug. 26 and paid him $1,350 for a Yeti 575 full-suspension mountain bike and a Rocky Mountain Element full-suspension mountain bike, according to court documents. Bowman gave him a handwritten receipt for the items and used his real name throughout the transaction.

Olson said officers from his department plan to retrieve the bikes from the man, who said he knew he’d probably have to give them up but wanted to do the right thing.

“I hope he gets some good karma points,” Olson said.