In the early hours of Wednesday morning, officers with the Grand Junction Police Department responded to the 1400 Block of Houston Avenue after being alerted to a theft in progress. Due to a high number of thefts in the area, officers had deployed a “bait bike,” a common reference for a bike equipped with a GPS tracking device, at this location. The bike was locked to a bike rack, and was valued at approximately $4,000.00.
Officers reviewed surveillance video and were able to observe a white male wearing tan clothing and a neon green backpack approach the bike, cut the lock, and ride away on the bike. There was also a female on a bike who was captured on the video in the same area, as the theft was occurring. Officers recognized both subjects from prior contacts.
As officers were searching the area for the suspects, the female was located in front of the residence at 1830 North 15th Street. Additionally, officers were able to observe in plain view in an open garage at the same residence both a neon green backpack, similar to the one observed in the security camera footage, as well as the seat from the stolen bike.
Based on their investigation, officers obtained a search warrant for the residence and located over 80 bike frames, and a large amount of disassembled bike parts. Some of the frames were confirmed to be reported as stolen, but not all of them.
Ultimately, several more subjects were contacted at or near the residence. This investigation resulted in the arrests of seven subjects related to this incident:
Jefferi Orona, 35, arrested for False Info on a Pawn Slip, Theft
Tristan Bales, 32, arrested for Felony Theft, as well as unrelated outstanding warrants
Brenda Goff, 27, arrested for Theft and Complicity
Raymond Ayers, 46, arrested for Theft and Complicity
Hayley Kuntz, 22, arrested for Theft and Complicity
Sydney Abeyta, 26, arrested for unrelated warrants
James Farnsworth, 32, arrested for Providing False Info to Law Enforcement
Additional charges and/or arrests may develop as the investigation unfolds.
We encourage anyone who may have had a bicycle stolen in the last two years and didn’t report it, to do so now. Those reports can be made online by clicking here. Investigation into this incident is active and ongoing, and detectives are working to connect these bikes with owners who may have been victims of theft.
We’d also like to take this opportunity to remind you that the Grand Junction Police Department offers bike registrations for only $1. Registering your bike with our agency greatly increases the probability that, should you be the victim of bike theft, we can return your property to you, if it’s recovered. To register your bike, bring it to the Police Department at 555 Ute Avenue during business hours, and someone will be happy to assist you. If you have questions about the process, please call our Records division at (970)549-5000.