Whangarei police are investigating a string of bicycle thefts including two where offenders replaced the bikes with old ones.
Whangarei Senior Sergeant Stephanie Hudson said police are investigating the potential link between four bikes which were stolen from various locations in Whangarei on Wednesday between 1pm and 5pm.
One bike which was stolen was attached to a lamp post on First Ave, another was stolen from the back of a car on Water St, one had been stolen from NorthTec but was later found by police and another was stolen from Maunu Rd.
"In the first two they've taken the bikes and left old ones there," she said.
Whangarei woman Sharon Mcleod thought she was safe to leave her bike unchained outside of Stallworthy Dental Surgery on Maunu Rd while she popped inside for a few minutes.
"I went in for two to three minutes to get bank account details and thought it would be okay," she said.
But when she walked outside her red BMX cruiser, which she was riding to the Whangarei BMX Club, was gone.
"I didn't think nice words," she said "I've had it for about six years and it's very important because I use it every Wednesday night to race and without that it's useless."
Ms Mcleod said she bought the bike for about $700 and had to hire another bike to use at the Whangarei BMX Club
Anyone with information can contact the Whangarei police station on 09 4304500 or anonymously on Crimestoppers 0800 555 111.