Marathon Mom Chases Down Bike Thief

Courtesy Todd Tatterson

One thief in Seattle chose the wrong mom to try to steal from.

Sarah Tatterson, 37, of West Seattle, Wash., is an accomplished runner, who has completed a dozen half-marathons in her lifetime. So earlier this month when she noticed a stranger walking up her driveway, entering her garage and making a quick exit with her husband's bicycle, her running instincts immediately kicked in.

"I was in my living room. I had just changed into my running clothes and was folding a load of laundry before I headed out," Tatterson told "I happened to catch out of the corner of my eye a man walking into my detached garage. I ran out there right away expecting that someone was trying steal something. As he emerged from the garage with my husband's bike, I ordered him to put it down and he chose not to."

The man, whom Tatterson describes as in his late 40s or early 50s, looked her straight in the eye and still continued to take off with the bike, which only angered her even more.

"At that point I was determined to get it back," she explained. 'I'm like, 'Sorry buddy.' He looked me straight in the eye and kept going with the bike which made me angry for thinking he was bigger and stronger."

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About 30 steps later, the thief realized there was no way he could escape the athletic mom and proceeded to ditch the bike by some trash bins. However, that didn't deter Tatterson from continuing in hot pursuit.

"I just continued to follow him calling out for neighbors to call 911," said Tatterson. "He was probably late 40s, early 50s and clearly not an athlete. He was huffing and puffing and we got probably almost a mile down the road before the cops caught up to us, all the while asking me to stop following him."

But there was no way Tatterson was going to stop.

"I was planning on running six miles that day, but I could do 12 if I needed to," she said.

Tatterson grew up overseas and says she's been victimized before, but never has experienced something as serious as this.

"I've been stolen from many times before in my life," she said. "But nothing has gone down quite like this. It was an instinct, and I reacted in the moment. I didn't have much time to think about it."

Even while running closely behind the thief, Tatterson, who just completed her masters in Pastoral counseling, was trying to reason with the man.

"I was trying to get him to talk to me, and he wasn't wanting to talk about his feelings," she said. "The options were letting him go, or him going to jail. The full meaning of justice is that he'd be rehabilitated. I don't know who he is, but I hope he gets the help he needs."

The man was charged with theft and criminal trespass in the first degree.