Metro - A prolific thief has become the first man in Britain to be given a life-time ban from riding a bike.
John Liddicoat, 47, can’t even go near bikes, in a bid to prevent him from stealing them.
He was jailed for three-and-a-half-years for his latest spree but given a lifetime ban from going within four meters (13ft) of any bike.
As part of his unusual and indefinite Criminal Behaviour Order, Judge Ian Lawrie made it an offence for him to have a bicycle – unless he can prove ownership.
Liddicoat will also be hauled back to court after his release if he is seen near a bike rack or on a bicycle.
Plymouth Crown Court heard he had 48 convictions for 142 offences, including many thefts of bicycles and several burglaries.
Judge Lawrie said: ‘He has a tendency to take anything which is not bolted down. You have an appalling record, you are incapable of behaving yourself and you have not learnt your lesson.’
When will the justice system learn? Disciplining a career criminal is the exact same thing as scolding a child. Telling them "no" isn't a deterrent, it's basically an invitation. You think the perpetual bike stealer is just going to stop riding bikes because he's not allowed to? By telling him that he absolutely, under no circumstances can be caught dead on a bicycle the judge put every bicycle in the country at risk. It's like going on a diet where you can't eat meat. You start noticing meat EVERYWHERE. You walk by a steakhouse and the aroma of chargrilled red meat is as potent as you can ever remember. You can literally follow your nose to every BBQ taking place within a 3 mile radius. It's torture. By making a repeat offender swear off bikes you've drawn more attention to every bike he comes across.
We aren't talking about money or cars, we are talking about a mode of transportation that requires physical labor. Sure, bikes can be nice to ride occasionally, but they aren't something that a person would risk their livelihood for. The thrill of stealing that bike, however, is something thats someone would risk their livelihood for. That's why there is only one way to get this guy to stop taking other people's bikes, and that's by getting him one of his own. I know it seems counterproductive to gift a person upon their release from prison, but if you really want him to stop then you need to show him that it's not the bike that he loves, it's the ecstasy of thievery. You can't fix the problem until you identify it, and right now this guy truly believes he's obsessed with cycling. Now, that won't cut down on his attempted burglaries by any stretch of the imagination, but it will help him stop stealing bikes, and that was the point of this punishment in the first place, right?