Los Angeles authorities discovered the bicycles while clearing homeless encampments in Orange County, Calif.
In the midst of a massive crackdown on homeless camps along the Santa Ana River last week, the Orange County Sheriff’s Department uncovered a trove of hidden bicycles.
According to the OCSD’s Facebook page, more than 1,000 bicycles and bicycle parts were “stuffed into an underground tunnel.” According to a report in the L.A. Times, authorities are not certain if or how many of the bicycles might be stolen.
1,000 Bicycles Found in Underground Tunnel
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in the report it would likely arrange a public walkthrough to allow potential owners to recover their bikes.
“Common sense would usually dictate if you have 1,000 bikes in a tunnel, some of them could be stolen,” Lt. Jeff Puckett told the L.A. Times.
A video posted to the OCSD Facebook page also shows authorities using a winch to haul out dozens of bikes at a time. According to the report, the tunnel sits along a concrete riverbed in Santa Ana.
County officials, sheriff’s deputies, and police began sweeping homeless encampments along a river trail earlier this month to clear the areas for “maintenance of flood control district property,” according to the report.
That, combined with complaints of “unsanitary conditions and other nuisances” by condominium owners near the Santa Ana encampment, led authorities to the discovery.