Great-grandmother takes on bike thief

Mari Parker helps get bicycle back to its rightful owner

A 72 year-old great-grandmother managed to reunite a teenager with his stolen bicycle after taking on a bike thief and preventing him from making off with it.

Metro reports that Mari Parker was working at her son’s shop, Barnsley Antiques Centre, when a man aged in his 20s came in and tried to sell her the bike for £150.

However, Ms Parker had seen a post on Facebook which said that the bike, worth £1,200, was stolen.

Not only did she refuse to pay the man cash, but she also prevented him from leaving the shop with the bike, and her son Daniel subsequently contacted the family of the owner to arrange for collection.

Half an hour later, however, the thief returned and tried to take the bike. “I think he must have watched my son leave and known I was in the shop on my own so he came back,” said Ms Parker.

“He said. ‘Will there be a reward then?’ And I told him, ‘No’.

“He said, ‘I’m going to bleep bleep take it back then’, and I came out from behind the counter and told him he wasn’t.

“He had hold of one side of the bike and I had hold of the other and we were in this tug of war.

“He pulled me outside and we were fighting in the street. A couple of customers came out to help but I was worried about what would happen to them so I told them to leave it to me and that they should call the police.

“But I refused to let go,” she added. “I knew a young boy was coming back for his bike and I couldn’t tell them we didn’t have it.”

Metro says that according to South Yorkshire Police, a 23-year-old man was arrested but the victim’s family did not want him to be prosecuted.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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