Breaking News in the Industry: May 18, 2016

Naples Jewelry Store Employee Arrested in $1M Theft

A Littman Jewelers store employee accused of stealing more than $1 million worth of items is now in jail, the Naples Police Department said. Police say Jeffrey Charles Vickers, 35, admitted to the theft and said he was going to use the jewelry to fund his drug addiction. Monday morning, management at the jewelry store discovered watches, loose diamonds, and other pieces of jewelry were missing from the store safe. Surveillance video showed a man inside the store shortly after it closed on Sunday. The suspect deactivated the alarm, entered the safe, and removed multiple jewelry cases which he placed into a backpack and garbage bag, police said. The man also took money out of the cash register before leaving the store, police said. Other employees of the store were able to identify Vickers as the suspect. Inside Vickers’ vehicle, detectives found the items stolen. Authorities were also able to locate the clothing worn by Vickers during the burglary as evidence… [CBS News]


13 Arrested in Sarasota County Retail Theft Sting

The Sarasota County Sheriff’s office recently added 13 new inmates on charges ranging from petit theft to drug trafficking. The haul was part of a four-day sting targeting heavy retail theft locations in the county. Between the six men and seven women now behind bars in the Sarasota County jail, a total of 32 charges have been filed. Shoplifting is often a means to an end for many of those involved. “A lot of these people, they’re stealing to support other behaviors they may have that are also criminal. We believe that by focusing on this type of crime, we’re stopping other crime from occurring,” says Capt. Walsh. Retail theft goes beyond stealing merchandise. Essie Sweet is accused of trying to steal a local woman’s identity by using her stolen credit cards at Target. And Essie shares more than a few cells with the rest of these suspects. Several boast an extensive rap sheet, among them are 197 prior charges. “Really the goal is crime prevention,” says Walsh. “We’re not interested in arresting people as much as we are just stopping the crime from occurring…” [ABC News]

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3 Charged after $10K Worth of Purses Stolen from Kentucky Outlet Mall

Three people are behind bars in connection to a theft ring. Police have arrested Marlon Hill, Courtney Chesher, and Aaron Bruner. Hill and Chesher were trying to sell stolen purses on Facebook, at Louisville Pawn shops, and even out of a car. The three week long investigation led them to an apartment complex in Taylorsville. Altogether there was more than $10,000 worth of Kate Spade purses and wallets between the home and a vehicle. Police say Kate Spade of the Outlet Malls of the Bluegrass did not realize a theft had been going on. The merchandise was stolen from storage space they were renting that was not yet open to the public. “The maintenance actually had keys to this location and that’s how he was removing the purses,” police said. The maintenance man is Bruner. Police say Bruner admitted to taking the purses in Simpsonville and traded them in Spencer County. “It was basically to support a drug habit. He was trading these purses for heroin,” police said. Police believe there are still more purses out there and there may be more arrests to come… [ABC News]


3 Detained after Traffic Stop Uncovers Cellphone Store Burglary

Authorities have detained three Miami-area residents found with $30,000 worth of stolen electronics following a traffic stop. A sheriff’s deputy stopped the vehicle for driving without its headlights on. In the vehicle officials reported finding $600, a crowbar, masks and two bags containing 200 smartphones and iPads worth an estimated $30,000. The items were believed to have been taken from iCARE Smartphone Repair. Officers went to the business and found that its front door had been smashed. They reviewed surveillance video showing two males entering, smashing cases with a crowbar and filling the bags with smartphones. One of the burglars grabbed a cash drawer off the counter. After GPD Special Operations Unit members interviewed the trio, they charged Stephanie Janteria Bascone with possession of burglary tools, dealing in stolen property, fraudulent use of an ID, possession of a stolen credit card and possession of marijuana. Passengers Carl Dwayne Hurd was charged with possession of burglary tools and dealing in stolen property, and Darius Anthony Smith, was charged with possession of burglary tools, dealing in stolen property and giving law enforcement a false ID. The three were held in the Alachua County Jail, and bond had not been set… [Gainesville Sun]


LP Worldwide: Abused Mum of Two Stole £7,000 from Shop Where She Worked

A mother-of-two stole £7,000 from the convenience store where she worked. Sanela Miskic took the cash from a safe at a Mirfield (United Kingdom) One Stop Shop. But rather than keep it for herself she sent the stolen money back to her native country Slovenia to bribe her ex-husband to keep away from her. Magistrates heard that she had escaped from the central European country following an abusive relationship and feared for the safety of other family members still living there. Laura McBride, prosecuting, said: “Due to the large amounts of cash found to be missing a regional security supervisor undertook an investigation and after watching the CCTV saw that the defendant was responsible. “She said that in a moment of madness she took the money,” claimed Mike Sisson-Pell, mitigating. He described the offences committed by his client as taking place under ‘bizarre circumstances’. He explained: “She didn’t steal the money for herself, she stole the money to keep her husband away from her…There’s a considerable history which has led her into this criminality which is very much out of character…” [Huddersfield Daily Examiner]


LP Worldwide: Appeal for More Data as Cargo Crime in EMEA Region Rises 115% Year-on-Year

Cargo crime has reached a three-year high, according to the latest reports by TAPA’s Europe, Middle East and Africa region. The number of incidents reported rose 115% year-on-year, to 444 across 19 countries, for the first quarter. Of those, 29 were major losses, with a value of more than €100,000. The average loss was just under €75,000, while the largest was the theft of eight pallets of perfume, valued at €600,000, from a trailer in Lower Saxony, Germany. Of the thefts, 56%, were from trucks stopped at motorway service stations, lay-bys or industrial estates. TAPA noted that a lack of secure parking locations in Europe was evident, with losses from unsecure parking locations accounting for 55% of the thefts. While it is not clear whether the rise is due to better reporting or more crime, there does appear to be a increasing number of thefts, with a wide variety of goods targeted. “High volumes of lower-value goods [prove] to be just as attractive to criminals as a few high-value products,” noted TAPA. Because some countries report cargo crime better than others seems to distort the overall figures. More than 86% of the cargo thefts reported in the first quarter happened in just four countries – those where law enforcement agencies report their data to TAPA. “We do not know the full extent of cargo crime in EMEA, nor globally. We do know, however, that we are barely scratching the surface of the number of incidents we believe are happening in some major countries in our region…” [The Loadstar]


Shoplifter Caught Getting Dinner after Heist in Same Strip M£all

A Mesa man’s hunger lead to his arrest after he allegedly took $600 in products from a Chandler Walmart. Police report that on May 10 around dinner time, 25-year-old Mohamed Ahmed Kedir was seen shoplifting items from the Walmart. A description of Kedir was given and Chandler bicycle police located him eating at the Jimmy John’s in the same strip mall. A search of his backpack revealed the stolen items. Kedir has been charged with shoplifting was also found to have a warrant for another shoplifting situation in Phoenix… [ABC News]

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