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UPDATE: Harrisburg veteran talks about unexpected support after ‘thanking’ thief on Craigslist

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Since WPMT FOX43 aired the story on Wednesday about a Harrisburg man who posted on Craigslist, ‘thanking’ the thief who stole his bike, he says support has been pouring in.

“I didn’t think anybody would read it. It was 5:00 a.m. I was just venting, I didn’t think a single person would read it,” said Jake Ramsey.
You may have read his rant on Craigslist, the popular classifieds wesbite, which read in part: “To the man who stole my bike, thank you for stealing my bike as I chased you down second street. As a bicycle delivery driver from Jimmy Johns I don’t really need it. Nor do kids need to eat this month. My three-year old is looking a little chubby anyways. I also needed room in my apartment where the bike sat,” wrote Ramsey.

“It’s been a whirlwind. It has been just nonstop. I’ve gotten hundreds, maybe thousands at this point, emails, text messages, Facebook emails,” said Ramsey. Who has gotten offers of money, bikes, and even bike locks. “Two people dropped off bikes. A gentleman from the West Shore dropped off a mountain bike, and then a business owner dropped off a Trek, a brand new Trek, about 30 years newer than the bike I Was riding. It’s something, it’s surreal,” said Ramsey, who said he is beyond thankful for the gestures.

Earlier story:

Just after 2 a.m. Wednesday morning Jake Ramsey was finishing his shift at Jimmy John’s on Second Street in Harrisburg. As he looked out the front window, something caught his eye.

“We’re closing up and I look out the window and there is this guy standing with my bike in his arms. I said ‘hey, someone is stealing my bike!’ So I ran outside and I chased him and he took off down second street,” said Jake.
After a good chase Jake realized he wasn’t going to catch him. “I said ‘hey, enjoy my bike! And he said I will!” said Jake.
While getting something stolen is not funny, how Jake reacted next, is. After calling police to report the theft he took to the popular classifieds website ‘Craigslist” to air his grievances about the bike thief. “I wanted to vent, and I didn’t want to call anybody at 5 in the morning. I was frustrated so I put a little sarcastic ad on Craigslist,” said Jake.
On the ad Jake posted pictures of him and his kids, and progress pictures of the bike. “From an old mountain bike to a mean single track delivery machine.,” he said in the post, and added, “Please continue sanding it down and paint it a flat black. I didn’t want it to stand out and be stolen..this is Harrisburg after all.”
“I worked 89 hours last week- 89 hours. I had that bike specifically made for delivery driving. I had it modified and everything. I have never been victimized like that before, and I got to see the guy do it,” said Jake who just finished active duty in the Army and continues to serve in the National Guard. He also works two other jobs to support his three children ages eight, six and four. “I just got done with active duty orders, I just started a lawn care business, it’s slow starting up, so I got a job with Jimmy Johns to supplement my business,” said Jake. “It blew my mind knowing that this is my bike, this is what I use to support my family. I like this bike, and you’re taking it from me and you didn’t even ask, or thank me, or anything.”
But in the end Jake said he forgives the thief. “I do forgive him. We are all human and we all sin,” said Jake.

Merely 12 hours after posting the message Jake said he has already received support from all over. “People have been emailing, calling and very supportive, offering their bicycles, offering money and really it’s overwhelming their support,” said Jake. Someone even dropped off a replacement bike. “A gentleman actually just dropped off a bike for me. He dropped it off for me this morning. He saw the Craigslist ad and said ‘I fix up bikes, and I can’t not give you this bike.’ Within hours people were offering to drop off bicycles,” said Jake, who vows to turn the experience into something positive. “If anybody donates any money I am going to use it as a fund for locks, and for anybody that wants a lock. The people around here  are criminals of opportunity, if you leave something out even for a couple of seconds they will take it,” said Jake.

To see his ad on Craigslist click here

1 Comment

  • TheOpinionatedOne

    Happy to hear there are good people out there who are willing to help a fellow human being. The person who stole the bike should be ashamed of himself. He is a poor excuse for a human being. Human behavior never ceases to amaze me, but it also makes me sad that human beings do not care about others. There are so many good people in this world, but there are more evil, bad, folks than good. At least, that is how I see it. Every day there is another violent act reported in the news, and for what? Drugs, relationship issues, or just folks being just plain mean. The gentlemen whose bike was stolen is probably lucky he didn't catch the thief. He might not be among the living today, and his children would have been without a Dad. Our society is going downhill at a fast pace, and no one seems to care. Our elected leaders only seem to care about their perks, you know huge salaries, and the whopping pension they will receive at the end of their terms. I should have been so lucky to receive a gobstopper of a pension that they will receive and I had over 34 years on the job. Things are definitely out of skew.

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