Stolen bike returned to Everett boy after mom’s social media post

EVERETT, Wash. -- Cate Harrington is a woman on a mission.

“Keep raising hell, just keep at it and eventually something will have to give,” says Harrington.

She says someone stole her 11-year-old son’s bike from her fenced-in yard two weeks ago.

“It’s a sting ray chopper bike, so kind of old school, not a low rider, but it’s a pretty distinguishable bike."

And just when she thought she’d never see it again…

“I was driving down Broadway and it actually cut in front of me,” says Harrington.

Cate says she confronted the man on the bike and recorded it on her cell phone. Next, she says the man on the bike took off. Cate posted the cell phone video on social media and she filed a police report for the stolen bike Monday night. She says she waited so long because she’d pretty much given up hope.

“This isn’t just about a stolen bike,” says Harrington.

If Cate looks familiar, it’s because Q13 News first introduced you to her about four years ago, when she teamed up with other parents to clean up the parks in Everett; picking up used needles and making sure things are safe for their kids. We’ve documented her efforts throughout the years, and today, Cate says not much has changed, except her outlook.

“I felt like I put a lot of effort and time into it and I know that there are so many in our community who are frustrated,” says Harrington.

And wouldn’t you know it; during our interview Cate got in touch with the man on the bike through social media and he agreed to meet her at Clark Park to return her son’s bike. He tells Q13 News his name is James Owens, and he says he is the man on the bike in Cate’s recording. He says he bought the bike off another guy for $50.

“I just want to make it right. I know how it is. I got a chopper, too. It got stolen while I was in jail,” says Owens.

Q13's Jamie Tompkins asked, “So you didn’t realize this is a stolen bike?

“I thought it was stolen, but from my brother. I thought it was my brother’s that got stolen,” said Owens.

Like Cate said earlier, this isn’t a story about a stolen bicycle.

“It’s much more than that,” says Harrington.

It’s a cycle of crime in neighborhoods all over Western Washington.

“And it just continues; it’s never-ending,” says Harrington.

Today that cycle came full circle.

“It’s kind of insane,” says 11-year-old Caleb, adding that he did not expect to get the bike back.

Everett Police want to remind everyone: if you’ve had something stolen, never confront the person yourself; let police officers handle it.

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