Low return on investment, but zero risk of punishment means big incentive to steal bikes.
Maybe stuff we already know, but interesting nonetheless:
Using this risk-return framework for crime, it begins to be clear why there is so much bike theft. For all practical purposes, stealing a bike is risk-free crime. It turns out there is a near zero chance you will be caught stealing a bike.
It’s dead simple to steal a bike and the consequences are near zero. You can resell stolen bikes.
More at Pricenomics –> What Happens to Stolen Bicycles?