How Out Of Control Is Shoplifting?


Videos are all over YouTube, since retail theft is on the rise and smash-and-grab robberies have become more common.

Since 2017, retail thefts have increased by 77%. But it’s not the increase in theft that is driving concern as much as smash-and-grab robberies.

“We are living in a nation where stealing is no longer considered a crime, and those stealing are not criminals,” David Johnston, the vice president of asset protection and retail operations for the Washington, D.C.-based National Retail Federation, wrote in September.

Lax enforcement of laws and lax attitudes toward property are the main causes of the breakdown of social order. The people who do not have it will find a way to get it.

Some people on the internet defend the thieves by claiming they are champions of racial equality. After all, retail stores are covered by insurance in this case, right? The thieves don’t suffer any losses, but they can sell the stolen goods to pay for food for their children.

Or something similar.

Over the past few years, organized gangs have become more sophisticated. They are now responsible for more smash-and-grab robberies. The latest strategy is to drive a pickup or SUV through the front of a store and jump out. They then grab as much as possible.

The same thieves have targeted the same store in Chicago four times.

Chicago Tribune:

Drake Sweeney is the creative director at SVRN, a boutique that specializes in luxury fashion. He estimated that the store suffered a loss of $50,000 to $80,000 in property damage, and $50,000 to $100,000 of merchandise after a group drove an SUV into the retail clothing shop early on Tuesday morning.

Sweeney stated, “They stole everything you can imagine.”

The last time the store was robbed and damaged was less than a week ago, at the end of November.

Chicago police report that in the latest robbery around 3:11 a.m., a group of thieves used a Jeep SUV as a weapon to smash the front and security gates of the store located at 171 N. Aberdeen St. Police said they fled in several vehicles.

Adam Gelb is the CEO of the Council on Criminal Justice. He said that the overall data does not indicate a significant shift in average shoplifting events, but the brazen, organized ransackings, captured on video and coordinated on social media, suggest a feeling of lawlessness.

What do you think?

The Council on Criminal Justice has released their study, which shows (naturally) how shoplifting is on the decline and that we are all in a panic for no good reason. According to the council, “larceny dropped 7% in the first six months of 2023 as compared with the same period in 2019.”

Are we missing a few years? These missing years correspond to the years of mayhem, murder, and lawlessness that occurred during the pandemic. The category “larceny”, however, is not the same as “retail theft.” In the first half of 2023, shoplifting incidents in 24 major cities increased by 16%.

The Council is trying to prove the wrong negative. The dramatic rise in robberies reflects a lack of respect for law, businesses, and each other. This could be an indication of the decline in civilization or not.

It is absurd to try and normalize the recent robberies.

Scott Glenn is the vice president for asset protection at Home Depot. They are dangerous, and they care about nothing but getting out of the shop with as much merchandise as possible. “Our associates have been attacked with guns, knives, and other physical threats.”

Will it take the death of a store clerk to bring about any change?