(GLOBE AND MAIL) The man who stole Kayla Smith’s bike, then tried to sell it on Craigslist, had one request when she asked to take it for a test drive. “Don’t ride away,” he said.

Ms. Smith, a 33-year-old bartender at a trendy Gastown pub, had set up the meeting after seeing her bike of a mere 4 1/2 months pop up on the online classifieds website. As she stood in the McDonald’s parking lot where she and the seller had agreed to meet, the only one of the two who knew the bike was actually hers, Ms. Smith still hadn’t settled on a game plan.

But she had the element of surprise on her side, and once the Vancouver woman was back in the driver’s seat, she knew exactly what she wanted to do. Her hands shook, but her feet pedalled. And pedalled, until she was gone.

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