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The student news site of Pleasant Valley High School

Spartan Shield

The student news site of Pleasant Valley High School

Spartan Shield

Analyzing the increased popularity of shoplifting

Best+Buy+is+just+one+of+many+stores+that+has+begun+to+fall+victim+to+the+shoplifting+epidemic.+%0A
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/15-sneaky-ways-save-best-200018271.html
Best Buy is just one of many stores that has begun to fall victim to the shoplifting epidemic.

Shoplifting is always a risk that business owners take on when they open a store. For the most part, it does not tend to be a large problem in maintaining a successful business. In recent years, however, the rise in shoplifting incidents has left many businesses struggling to combat this issue. 

One major challenge retailers face in dealing with shoplifting is their limited power to physically stop shoplifters. Many businesses, out of concern for liability and safety, have policies that discourage employees from physically intervening. Instead, they rely on store security personnel and surveillance systems in the hope that law enforcement will handle the situation. This hands-off approach leaves stores vulnerable to losses.

This problem is sweeping the nation and poses a problem for more than just the stores. Businesses rely on outside sources like the police to fix their problems in their stores. This puts a massive strain on the ability for the police to focus on larger issues, as they have to spend the time investigating and tracking down the shoplifters. Another problem that has spawned from stores’ lack of ability to stop shoplifting is repeat offenders. Because they rarely get caught, many shoplifters continue to steal. 

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There is also a legality problem when it comes to shoplifting. Depending on the dollar amount stolen and the number of people involved, the punishment for the act can be anything from a ban from the store to a felony, but it varies throughout the states. California’s proposition 20 dictates that to be considered organized retail theft, there must be two people shoplifting twice in six months for a value of over $250. Whereas in other states there is no limit, a man in Arizona was given a felony charge after stealing items that had a value of less than $10.

Shoplifting takes place all over the country, including in the Quad Cities. Senior Tate Brecht works at Best Buy where shoplifting has been a problem. “It is pretty obvious that people come in solely to steal from the store. Like most other stores we are not allowed to touch them but can only alert the managers,” said Brecht.

In attempts to combat shoplifting, many techniques have been popularized in the retail industry. One popular technique is to have some form of security personnel at the door. This position is often called asset protection and allows workers in this position more power to stop theft. Another technique that is used is creating a welcoming environment. The idea behind this is to make it harder on the shoplifters to feel the want to steal from a store. 

Senior Kole Ortiz works at Hyvee, which has implemented some of these behaviors. “The store implements working on being welcoming and making sure that you keep track of items while checking customers out. The self checkout has made it a little more difficult but there are still people watching over that,” said Ortiz. 

Shoplifting has become a very large problem in communities across the country, and without the proper changes, it could continue to grow. With the proper precautions being taken and new implementations in stores, shoplifting can be severely reduced and all stores retail and small business can continue to flourish.

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Alex Lokenvitz, Sports Website Manager
Alex Lokenvitz is a senior at PV and plans to further his education at the University of Iowa. Alex has played football all 4 years of high school and is also involved in other non school related sports. Alex has also been in band since sixth grade and has been in jazz 1 for 3 years and on the drum line all 4 years as well. In his free time, Alex enjoys training in the gym and spending time with friends and family. Alex chose the sport website manager because of his interest in sports and is looking forward to keeping up with all PV athletics!
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    Jackson PeerDec 2, 2023 at 7:07 pm

    Shoplifting is a very bad thing that should not be popularized. Great article.

    Reply