NorCal kayak thief warning

Here is an email sent out by Matt Broze, of Mariner Kayaks, to the Bay Area Sea Kayakers email list

I learned today that the prime suspect in the rash SF Bay area kayak thefts (that occurred in the fall of 2007 and again in the Spring and Summer of 2008) has recently been released from prison again in the Bay area. In the past he began advertising and stealing kayaks shortly after being released. Be wary of any kayak and bike ads you see and insist on meeting the seller at their home to view the items (rather than allowing the seller to deliver to you or to meet you at a mutually convenient location). If you see any ads (or have any experiences) that make you the slightest bit suspicious call Matt at (206)367-2831 and/or e-mail a copy of the ad to

If you contact a suspicious kayak ad (and they return your call–they almost never answer when you call) do not tell the man (or more likely, the woman) that you are a BASK member (or even admit knowing what BASK is). The thieves want to sell to “hicks from the sticks” who are not networked with other kayakers and therefore not likely to find out the kayak, they thought they got a good deal on, was actually stolen. The thief is very sophisticated with the phone system, almost certainly has caller ID, and will likely check you out to make sure you are who you say you are before even returning your call. If someone calls you back about your inquiry, the name and number appearing on your caller ID might even be bogus (but write it down anyway).

Please become familiar with the Stolen Kayak database at (or just Google “Stolen Kayaks”). If you go to the top of the yellow background “Most Recent” section (near the end of the database) you can get a pretty good idea by the XXX’s in the “Found” column just how prolific this kayak thief operating in the Bay Area has been. Those are the ones I’ve heard about, they are probably just the tip of the iceberg.

This thief usually steals kayaks from near the water but has also taken kayaks from parked car racks, kayak storage facilities, and carports. Heavy cables, hardened chains, and tough locks will only slow him down a little bit and are not even a deterrent to him. If you have a kayak that could be at risk, and can’t move it to a safer location, I’d suggest you consider a well concealed security camera with a video tape back-up that monitors your kayaks. Also, make sure you have taken pictures of your kayaks, written down the serial numbers, and stored those numbers in a place you will remember. Make a note (or take a picture) of any distinguishing features, such as, accessories that have been added to your kayak, damaged areas, or any other markings that might make it easy for others to identify your kayak if they happen to see it.

Another thing that might help you recover your kayak, should it be stolen, would be to have written, in heavy felt pen, "If found or purchased call " in several places inside your kayak, such as, the cockpit, the compartments, and under hatch lids. If your kayaks cannot be stored indoors it would be a good idea to remove essential items from them, such as the hatch lids and gaskets. Store those items inside your home. Removing essential items during storage will make your kayak considerably less attractive to any thief by making your kayak much harder to sell. If your kayak is stolen anyway, the new buyer will likely have to go shopping at a kayak store (or to the kayak’s manufacturer) to replace the missing hatch covers. If a theft occurs anyway, then ask those retailers and manufacturers who might sell your kayak model’s replacement parts, to be suspicious of anyone wanting to purchase hatch covers for your kayak model. That will greatly imp

rove your odds of recovering it.

DO these things NOW! Don’t wish you had later!

Please spread the word. Call or e-mail (this notice to) everyone you know within 100 miles of SF who kayaks (or is thinking about buying a kayak) to warn them of this threat.

A guy with this kind of reputation …

– Last Updated: Dec-23-08 11:03 PM EST –

... doesn't deserve the courtesy of being nameless in this announcement. I know California epitomizes political correctness, but seriously, this is too strange. Every little thing you can do to make his "business" a bit more difficult would be good, so tell everyone who he is! (not a message to the original poster, just a comment about the guy who sent out this e-mail)

The guy who sent this out is not a Californian, but instead is located in Washington State.

this is happening in the SF bay area

– Last Updated: Dec-24-08 1:23 AM EST –

you say??? I know the solution- Adrian Monk!! Ooh!! New episode right there- "Mr. Monk and the sea kayak thief"!!

In all seriousness though... I hope they bring down this scumbag and all kayaks are returned to the original owners, unharmed.

check this craigslist ad out- RELLY suspicious. A guy selling his own kayak, but he has no images of the actuall kayak, and doesnt even know what kind it is??

a really clever thief
would establish a ‘stolen kayak’ web site and live two states away to absolve himself from all suspicion

hopefully you jest…
Matt has a stellar reputation here in the PacNW and his stolen kayak list is very well known and appreciated…Hopefully your post was in jest as well as in haste and not just ignorance…

Google Matt and see how much he has contributed to our sport both through his great kayaks and services like this stolen kayak list…

a really clever thief

Posted by: bowrudder on Dec-24-08 1:15 AM (EST)

would establish a ‘stolen kayak’ web site and live two states away to absolve himself from all suspicion

all I can say is
Matt Broze’s “Coaster” sure looks a heck of a lot like Brian Schulz’s F1.

Coincidence? I think not.

Matt Broze’s “Coaster” sure looks a heck
I think you may have that backwards.