Breaking News in the Industry: November 22, 2017

Woman bit LP associate after shoplifting attempt

Police said a 53-year-old Youngstown, Ohio, woman bit a loss prevention associate during a shoplifting investigation. Sherry Gordon was arrested Saturday night at the Marc’s store on Tiffany Boulevard. The loss prevention associate told police that she witnessed Gordon hide candy in her purse and then try to leave without paying for it. She stopped Gordon and escorted her to the office, where she contacted police. The associate said it was at that time that Gordon attacked her, biting her breast, bicep and forearm. Other employees came to assist, pinning Gordon on the floor as she continued to try to bite employees, according to a police report. Gordon is charged with robbery. She’s being held in the Mahoning County Jail.. [Source: WKBN27 First News]

Two women arrested after high-speed chase in shoplifting case

Two Nashville, Tennessee  women have been arrested more than 100 miles from Eastland Mall where they’re accused of stealing items from Victoria’s Secret. Kentucky State Police said a trooper saw a car going more than 100 miles per hour on the Natcher Parkway in Daviess County Sunday. When the trooper tried to pull the car over, it sped up to more than 130 miles per hour initiating a chase. After the chase went through Daviess, Ohio, and Butler Counties on the parkway, the car tried to swerve around a semi truck in Warren County, but lost control. The car flipped several times before finally stopping. The driver of the car, 30-year-old Tawana McGill, was taken to a Bowling Green hospital to be treated for a broken neck, according to KSP. 30-year-old Michelle Beasley, a passenger in the car, was also arrested after the crash. Troopers recovered stolen merchandise from Victoria’s Secret identified as being from the Evansville store.  [Source: Tristate Homepage]

Package theft hits nearly one-third of Americans: Is video surveillance the answer?

The dream of online shopping is never having to brave store parking lots, long lines or empty shelves. The reality, at least some of the time, is coming home to an empty box or no box at all.  More than half of Americans say they know someone who’s had a package stolen from outside their home, and 30% say they’ve experienced it themselves, according to a new survey by Xfinity Home, Comcast’s home security service.  As the holiday count-down begins, consumers face a tradeoff between convenience and the risk of letting expensive goods sit out in the open for anyone to snatch. That’s prompted some unusual work-arounds from consumers and increased the incentive for delivery services, home-security providers and some police departments to find ways to crack down on package thefts. “Now I have all my personal stuff delivered to my office,” said Nyhus, who runs a public relations company called Nyhus Communications. “It kind of defeats the purpose of delivery.” Of the  nearly one-third of shoppers who’d had a package stolen, the survey found city dwellers experienced 42% of thefts. That compared with 26% in the suburbs and 19% in rural areas the survey, conducted by market research firm Wakefield Research, found. Home security systems, such as those from Xfinity Home, Ring doorbell, Nest and others, are promoted as one way to have peace of mind for home deliveries.

Police departments don’t agree on whether they help.  The Philadelphia Police Department figures it’s a boon. It posts videos of almost every crime where they’re available, said Det. Linda Longo. “You never know who’s going to recognize the person. Then if we get that person’s ID, we put out a warrant for their arrest,” she said. In Houston, police on several occasions have used surveillance footage to track serial package thieves. Spokeswoman Jodi Silva said they’ve had instances of thieves “going from house to house to house. They may be following a UPS truck. They’ll just jump out, see if there was a delivery and grab it,” she said. But in California, Capt. Gary Berg with the Campbell police department isn’t convinced. He could only think of one example of a thief being identified based on surveillance images and then arrested. “People who are relying on the camera to protect their packages are probably kidding themselves,” he said.  [Source: USA Today]

Police say woman, not Razorback basketball player, cited for shoplifting

A woman in Fayetteville, Arkansas, who police say was with a Razorback basketball player was cited, for shoplifting at a Walmart Neighborhood Market Saturday. Fayetteville police Sergeant Anthony Murphy originally said that Jaylen Barford was the one cited in the incident. Murphy now says Indica Austin was the one cited, not Barford. “He (Barford) was present, but not in trouble,” Murphy said. Murphy said Austin was cited at the Walmart Neighborhood Market on Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. around 5:30 p.m. She was given a citation and not taken into custody, according to Murphy. Fayetteville police sent a press release Monday apologizing to Barford for releasing incorrect information. [Source: KFBM5 News]

Three New York residents arrested after department store theft, police chase

A sheriff’s deputy had to arrest, at gunpoint, two of the three people allegedly involved in Friday afternoon’s 15-mile vehicle pursuit and crash. Nonetheless, nobody was hurt after a chase that started when items were allegedly stolen from a department store in Batavia and ended on Route 98 near Barre. The three Rochester residents allegedly stole more than $2,200 in merchandise from Kohl’s, and led police on the chase, Genesee County sheriff’s deputies said. Deputy Andrew Hale said the suspects’ vehicle, a 2004 tan Ford Freestar, was traveling as fast as about 120 mph, based on how fast police had to drive to pursue it. Hale did say speeds changed based on the traffic. The three allegedly left the scene after stealing the merchandise. Hale and New York State Trooper Mitch Hamilton found the suspects’ vehicle traveling northbound on Route 98 in the town of Batavia. Police initiated a traffic stop, but the suspects fled north and a chase began.   [Source: The Daily News]

Thanksgiving holiday cargo theft trends and security tips

Don’t let thieves ruin your Thanksgiving holiday. CargoNet examined theft trends from Thanksgiving week for 2012 to 2016 and determined that 163 cargo and trucking vehicle thefts were recorded in this period. The good news is that, after 2012, CargoNet data showed that theft activity slowed significantly. Forty-five thefts were reported in 2012 compared with 31, 30, 26, and 31 in 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016, respectively. Of the 163 cargo and trucking vehicle thefts reported in this analysis, 119 involved theft of cargo. In the 2012–2016 analysis, which runs Tuesday to Monday for Thanksgiving week, 86 semi-tractors and 107 semi-trailers were stolen. The estimated loss value for stolen cargo was $8.85 million. On average, each cargo theft was worth $132,929.69. If we apply that average across all 119 cargo theft incidents, the total estimated loss value becomes $15.8 million.

Reported theft was highest on Wednesday, with 30 reported thefts. Nineteen thefts were confirmed to have happened on Thanksgiving Day. Thieves in Texas logged the most holiday working hours: 35 thefts were reported in Texas. In Texas, thieves were most active in Dallas (10 incidents) and other cities in the Dallas–Fort Worth area (8 incidents). CargoNet recorded 26 thefts in California. Thefts were most common in Los Angeles County (8 thefts) and San Bernardino County (7 thefts). Thefts were also recorded in Alameda, Kern, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, and Ventura Counties. Texas and California were followed by Florida (19 incidents), Georgia (12 incidents), and Ontario, Canada (10 incidents). Perhaps surprisingly, no turkeys were reported stolen in this analysis, but cargo thieves did prefer stealing food and beverage items more than any other commodity, with 33 reported cargo thefts.  [Source: American Journal of Transportation]

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