Police: Surveillance operation leads to bike theft charges

Sophia Bollag, City Editor

Two Chicago men were charged with theft after one was seen cutting through a bike lock with a power saw Saturday in downtown Evanston during a police surveillance operation, police said.

Police wearing civilian clothing had observed the two men “casing” bike racks near the intersection of Church Street and Benson Avenue on shortly after 2 p.m. Saturday, police said. Police then saw one of the men use a power saw to cut through the lock of a Diamondback mountain bicycle and ride away. He was arrested after a brief foot chase, police said.

The two men had been working together, and the second man was also arrested, police said.

Police said the two men might be connected with more than 20 Evanston bike thefts.

The incident occurred during an operation prompted by an increased number of bike thefts in the area, police said.

The two men, Keith D. Freedman, 45, of the 3700 block of West Cullom Avenue, and Albert Sauls, 43, of the 5900 block of North Talman Avenue, were both charged with felony counts of theft. Freedman was also charged with criminal property damage, a misdemeanor.

Both men are scheduled to appear in court June 18.

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