Two young bike thieves swung an angle grinder at cafe patrons in an attempt to stop them escaping in north London.
Shocking footage shows two masked youths cutting the lock of a bicycle Crouch Hill on Tuesday at 18.10.
Another considers cycling up steep Crouch Mountain before changing his mind, taking the bike and running off towards Crouch End Haringey Park Library.
A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “Police were called at 6.11pm on Tuesday, September 20, after two men stole a bicycle in Crouch Hill.
“There were no arrests; investigations are ongoing.”
London was the worst region in England and Wales for bike theft, with an average of 390 thefts per 100,000 people.
The city was worst among the rest of England and Wales with 1,565 burglaries.
Using police records, bike insurer Bikmo found that 1,784 bikes were stolen in east London in 2021, the highest rate in the capital.
Cycling Weekly has obtained the exclusive figures from Metropolitan police shows that 162,943 bikes were stolen in London between 2017 and 2021 – one every 16 minutes.