World-class cyclist loses nearly everything in theft

Burglars take almost all his possessions from his S.L. home

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 25 2009 12:20 a.m. MST

One of Salt Lake City's most decorated bicycle riders has had just about everything he owns stolen out of his house.

"My head is just swimming with the things they've taken," said Sherry Hamik, mother of Dave Zabriskie.

Everything from cars to bicycles to TVs to video game systems to his espresso machine were cleaned out by a thief, or thieves, who Hamik believes may have taken an entire day or two loading items into a truck.

"They even took his clothes," she said. "There's not much left."

Despite living on a street with residents on either side of Zabriskie, no one apparently noticed the massive theft, even though Hamik said there were reports of neighbors' dogs barking uncontrollably for a time last week. Police were not called until Hamik went to check her son's house Monday and discovered the theft.

"That's what I can't figure out," she said. "I don't quite understand (how no one noticed) unless they did it all at night. It's just kind of hard to fathom."

Zabriskie, 30, is an internationally known cyclist. Among his many achievements, he holds the record for the fastest time trial in the history of the Tour de France, he has won three stages of the Tour de France and is a multiple winner of the U.S. National Time Trial Championship.

Zabriskie was out of town last week. Sunday, he placed second at the completion of the nine-day Tour of California race.

Hamik stopped by daily to check on her son's home, but she too had to go out of town at one point. Sometime between Feb. 17 and Monday, someone broke into Zabriskie's house. Based on tire prints found in the snow, investigators believe the burglary may have happened Feb. 17 or Feb. 18, Hamik said.

Some of the items stolen include:

A black 2008 Subaru Outback, Utah plate A189NC

A black 2006 Toyota Scion, Utah plate 094VWM

A Sony 52-inch flat-screen TV

A Bose speaker/receiver system worth an estimated $15,000

Video game systems

Thirteen bicycles, including an Olympic time trial bike

Laptops and a hard drive.

Hamik said the value of the items taken is "massive." "The bikes alone are about $10,000 apiece. That's only the bikes. That's not the cars or the things in the house. It's astronomical."

It appeared the burglars dumped everything in the garage and lined them up to be loaded, she said.

In addition, items that were one of a kind and held special personal meaning to Zabriskie were taken, such as a Beijing Olympic ring with his initials engraved, an Olympic watch, a race medal, his race jerseys from Garmin-Chipotle and the U.S. Postal Service, and limited-edition Marvel statues. The statues of characters such as a "Hellboy" pistol figurine, "Ash" Army of Darkness, "Tomb Raider" Lara Croft, "The Punisher," "Alien" and "Ironman" limited editions and a "Gears of War" character are about two to three feet high, numbered and "very heavy," according to police.

"He's very upset about it because a lot of these things can't be replaced. These are things that meant a lot to him from the Tour de France to medals to trophies, his bikes," Hamik said.

"I just don't understand what goes through people's heads. Where's people's conscience? What's going on with this world? I guess I really don't understand," she said.

Hamik is grateful, however, that no one was hurt.

Zabriskie, his family and police are now asking if anyone sees the distinctive high-end merchandise, either on eBay or in a pawn shop, to call investigators at 801-799-3000, or the Tips for Cash line at 801-799-INFO (4636).

"If anybody sees anything that's out of the ordinary, that looks like a bike you don't see normally, call the police," she pleaded. "If you see any type of jersey you don't normally see, please call police."

E-MAIL: preavy@desnews.com