If you have been a subscriber to The Hayes Report on Loss Prevention newsletter over the past years, you likely have read a few warnings about those dangers associated with attempting to confront or stop a suspected shoplifter.
Unfortunately, violence is the name of the game: some suspects in their desperate attempt to escape will pull and use a weapon. Others, resort to assaulting anyone who stands in their pathway to freedom.
Don’t ignore the risks involved. Stay alert! From every indication these types of violent acts are on the increase in 2016. Here are just seven incidents that occurred during this past March:
. Michigan: A store employee was stabbed in the neck after trying to stop a suspected shoplifter who was armed with a knife.
. Georgia: Shoplifter incident turned violent when two suspects pointed a gun at security guards.
. South Carolina: Police dash-cam showed police officers stopping an SUV with two suspected shoplifters. The driver rammed the police car in an attempt to escape.
. Georgia: Customer attempted to stop a shoplifter, but was assaulted by the suspect. The customer was beaten and then thrown to the ground, prior to the suspect fleeing the scene.
. North Carolina: Shoplifting suspect rammed a police car in an effort to escape. The vehicle involved was stolen. In addition to the car, other unspecified stolen items were seized at the time of arrest.
. Tennessee: Police arrested two armed suspects after officers responding to a shoplifting call found drugs and handgun in their possession.
. Kentucky: A store employee who attempted to stop a suspected shoplifter was assaulted during the suspect’s getaway.
Most importantly, make it a point to be familiar with your Company’s policies pertaining to what actions are to be taken in event a suspected theft is observed.
Experiences show the greatest risk of serious injury to a store employee is likely to occur when the following takes place:
– Aggressive contact/confrontation with the suspect
– Chases both inside and outside of a store
– Continuing to pursue a suspect into a parking lot
– Chasing a suspect in a vehicle
Well, if we can get just one LP member, manager, or associate to alter any past high-risk approach, and turn it into a positive strategy, this message is worthwhile!
Just remember when you suspect theft, know your Company’s policy and follow your A B C’s. Always Be Careful! $