Saturday, September 25, 2010

Our motorcycle is home!

Oh yes, you've heard right! One of our dirtbikes has found its way home to us after two and half years of being in the care of a criminal. Special thanks to the Carlsbad Police Department for its service and commitment to the citizens of Carlsbad! 

A before:
Desert 11-10-06 (14)

An After:

And our letter of thanks to the Carlsbad Police Department:
Dear Police Chief Morrison,

We are writing to you to let you know about a great experience we’ve had recently with the City of Carlsbad Police Department. This past week, we had a very customized, special motocross dirt bike recovered for us by Officer Steven Tashoff. It was because of his willingness to help, his diligence and special skills regarding this kind of crime, that we have had our property returned to us.

We faced many obstacles with this case. Before we made contact with Carlsbad’s Police Department, we were dealing with an indifferent officer from the Encinitas Sheriff’s Department. During the case, we had an incompetent officer from Ramona Sheriff’s Department almost ruin our chances of recovering the dirt bike. It was only your officer, Detective Tashoff, that was able to facilitate the case in a competent, confident way and as a result, our family can put this difficult and stressful time behind us.

It might amuse you to learn a little bit about the background of the case. In May of 2008, we had our toy hauler broken into and two custom dirt bikes stolen. One was a Suzuki motorcycle, and the other a Suzuki LTZ400 quad. The toy hauler was kept at our parent’s house in Encinitas. At that point in time, the officer at the Encinitas Sheriff’s department filled out his paperwork and filed it away. We felt that leads about the workers that were doing construction on the private road that our parents live on, were not followed up on, and that it was too much of a burden on the Encinitas Sheriff’s department to help us. Ever since then we have had problems with the DMV because according to them, one of the bikes were never reported as stolen and that is the responsibility of the police department. We tried to follow up with the officer and he was very aggressive, rude, and indifferent, and told us it was the DMV’s problem not his, nothing should be done on his side. After speaking with his Sergeant, we thought the problem had been fixed with the DMV, but we have continued to get notices to pay the registration for the bike, including collections notices that we have spent many hours in the DMV trying to resolve. It was insult to our already hurt hearts after having our special property stolen.

This past August, while browsing pictures of friends who were riding at Barona Oaks MX track, we discovered pictures of our stolen motorcycle. We were able to look up the rider on Facebook, and sure enough, there were detailed pictures of the dirtbike, positively identifying it. We were able to see through Facebook, when and where he would be riding next. We took this information to the officer in Encinitas, and he told us to wait until the guy had the bike at the track, and call the Sheriff’s Dispatch number so they could send an officer to check the vin number on the bike. We were told that it was pretty much our only chance of recovering the bike, and that a warrant could not be issued based on pictures because no judge would give one with that limited amount of information. No information about a Regional Auto Theft Task Force was given to us nor any other resource that would possibly help us.

Feeling very discouraged, we sought counsel with the City of Carlsbad Police Department. I, Kelie, spoke to a Community Service Officer about the case and asked if truly, that was our only option. She was very kind to me and took my information and later that afternoon I got a call from Officer Beronda. He told me that he would like to forward my information to an officer that they have on Regional Auto Theft Task Force, because he believed he would be able to help us. I was very thankful to him for reviewing our information and for helping guide us to a resource. We were in touch with Officer Tashoff within a few days and from there we felt confident the case was being followed up on and handled correctly.

Officer Tashoff reviewed the photos, talked about the options and was on top of everything that was going on, communicating with us the whole way.  This past Saturday before the motorcycle was recovered (about a month after first seeing the motorcycle on Facebook), we learned that the suspect was going to be riding up at Barona with the motorcycle. After leaving a voicemail for Detective Tashoff, we called the Sheriff’s Dispatch number to send an officer to the track. The officer proceeded to incorrectly identify the vin number and tip the suspect off as to how he was being watched on Facebook. That very day, his profile was locked and his profile picture was changed from him riding the stolen bike, to him riding his old bike. We felt like we had really blown it by not being patient and waiting for Officer Tashoff to handle the confrontation correctly. We were sick to our stomachs over being so close and having it end by the incompetence of the officer, and we felt bad that Officer Tashoff had been so willing to help us and now it had all been for nothing. It was a very stressful and emotional time for our family. Despite this setback, Officer Tashoff responded immediately by obtaining a warrant, went straight to the suspect’s house and recovered our motorcycle. It was only because of his diligence, and incredible skills in dealing with this case that we were able to see our motorcycle again. There are many more details to the case, but the commitment of Officer Tashoff is obvious.

Despite all the obstacles facing us, Officer Tashoff had our complete confidence and we are truly grateful to him for taking on our case and coming through for us. As citizens of this great City of Carlsbad, we are happy to know that the Carlsbad Police Department employs such wonderful people, all who care about the people in their community. It would have been easy for the Carlsbad Police department to say, “Sorry, that’s not our jurisdiction”, but instead showed us how a truly great Police Department operates and takes care of its citizens.

As the new Police Chief for Carlsbad, congratulations on being part of a truly wonderful community and the excellent Carlsbad Police Department.

Roger and Kelie Oreb 
Cc: Officer Steven Tashoff

1 comment:

Yarnhog said...

OMG--I can't believe you got it back! What a great story.