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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27239
Experience:  Criminal Justice Degree, JD with Criminal Law Concentration. Worked for the DA and U.S. Attorney.
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Hello, My neighbors and I have been stolen from a lot. My

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My neighbors and I have been stolen from a lot. My car window smashed in and stuff taken, bikes locked up stolen, boxes gone, buggy boards gone, etc.

I didn't care about it to much after the first offense but I belief the same person is terrorizing the area and I'd like to put some energy into catching him.

I'd like to either setup a bike with a GPS hidden in the bike seat or maybe a GPS hidden in a buggy board. The only problem is I'd have to pretty much cut a section out of the board and somewhat ruin it, but it wouldn't be that noticeable. Anyway, I've tested the accuracy and it's literally within 2 or 3 feet sometimes with battery life of about 5 days. I called the cops and they said it would be low priority but they would try to help within 12 hours or so.

Is this considered entrapment? Does this idea seem logical to catch somebody who is stealing in our area? I was planning on locking the bike up, I'm assuming they might be a requirement? Any possible downsides to this idea, besides my time and possibly not getting back whatever is stolen?

Any comments?

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd be happy to answer your questions today.

Entrapment occurs when police engage in behavior that would induce an ordinarily law-abiding citizen to commit a crime. You're not police, so it's only entrapment if you're found to have been acting on the police's behalf. Since you contacted them, and they're not really working with you, that's a gray area. If you installed a device that linked to your cell phone (and I have seen them), and tracked it yourself, or watched and followed the person, that wouldn't be entrapment at all. However, even if you call police and ask them to find the item using the GPS, I think the DA will be able to successfully overcome an entrapment claim. Police do sometimes leave unlocked vehicles (or decoy cars) to track car thieves and that's not entrapment, because most people don't just take unlocked cars.

If the bike were locked up, that tends to negate a claim that you did something that would cause a law-abiding person to break the law. (Of course, most of us wouldn't take a bike that wasn't locked up, either).

Once you know who is taking the items, there may also be a civil suit against the person if you are able to figure out who it is and can prove that all the thefts are related.

The primary downsides are, as you said, the time involved, the cost of the device, and losing whatever item is taken. There's also the risk of retaliation by the thief.

If you have any questions or concerns about what I've written, please reply so that I may address them. It's important to me that you are 100% satisfied with the service I provide. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so that I get credit for answering your question. Thank you.
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