Local News

Shoplifting jumps in down economy

Posted December 16, 2009

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— More people in Raleigh appear to be turning to the five-finger discount to save money in these days of high unemployment and tight family finances.

Reports of shoplifting are up almost 30 percent through the first 10 months of this year when compared with the same period in 2008, according to Raleigh Police Department statistics. There were more reports of shoplifting through October than in all of last year, which saw the highest number of shoplifting cases in at least five years, according to police statistics.

Cases at local Walmart, Target and Kmart stores accounted for about a third of the shoplifting reports in Raleigh this year, police said.

Police haven't attributed the spike in shoplifting to any particular reason, said Jim Sughrue, spokesman for the Raleigh Police Department.


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  • 007KnightRider Dec 16, 2009

    "Police haven't attributed the spike in shoplifting to any particular reason, said Jim Sughrue, spokesman for the Raleigh Police Department." - RPD

    One word ECONOMY, case closed> That was easy, geez. I should become an RPD officer clearly they need help!

  • anneonymousone Dec 16, 2009

    The economy is an explanation for increased shoplifting, which is not the same as an excuse.

    Now if required goods were being stolen more often (food, medical supplies and health care supplies, etc.), that would tell me more about people's perceptions of pride or that food pantries and the like are in rough shape.

    Is there a general feeling among the desperate that megastores can afford the losses more than locally owned places?

  • Just the facts mam Dec 16, 2009

    Having worked in the past in security at a large retail chain in a large city and having to deal with shoplifters on a consistent basis, I do have some experience with this. Most of the people we caught stealing were not stealing because they did not have something to eat - they were stealing because they were greedy. Cigarettes were a big theft problem back then - people were either stealing them as they did not want to pay for them, or they were selling them for money. If more people were stealing because they were hungry and needed something to eat, then this could be understandable. But more people are stealing now (as this article points out), and most are stealing as they are greedy (not because they are hungry). Some steal for the thrill, but that is another story...

  • RedStatesManWatts Dec 16, 2009

    Who would've thunk it?

  • jrspyies Dec 16, 2009

    This reminds me of a story when I was 18 and working at wally world. I just got done clocking out and I was on my way to my car when one of the managers comes running out and ask me to wait a minute because they just caught a group of people stealing. Well, they ended up catching the people and I was asked to clock back in and ring everything up because they needed a purchase inventory to give over to the police so that they could see if the perps would get charged with a felony. Well in order to do that you have to ring junk up in training mode. This meant i had to type in the UPC codes on everything in the shopping cart. To make a long story short 927 dollars and over 100 items later I was done. I hate shoplifters because of this!!! Just thought I'd share my horror story! LOL

  • Metical Dec 16, 2009

    DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT here's my profile on you based on your posts:

    No advanced education beyond secondary school.
    Your travels have been limited to the 48 contiguous states
    You move in a circle of like-minded friends and family.
    Your parents used fear and corporal punishment as a means of discipline.
    You think French Fries are made in France.
    You lack the confidence and intelligence to debate these issues in a public forum.
    You are generally miserable because you realize that the world is quickly leaving you behind. If I'm wrong on any of this, that just underscores the dangers of profiling and generalizations. If I'm right, it wouldn't come as a surprise.

  • timothycapwell Dec 16, 2009

    Is there a map of the most concentrated areas of theft are?

  • Eduardo1 Dec 16, 2009

    I can not believe that this is blamed on a down economy.
    The HEAD Czar, says that the economy is improving, we avoided this, we avoided that.
    People who steal, do not wait for a down economy anyway to steal. They steal because they are CRIMINALS
    I have been out of work, I never EVEN think about stealing to keep ourselves going
    Please also stop making this a racial issue from either side of the coin. or find a better place to air your opinions BLACK or WHITE

  • willowisthankfulforchristmas Dec 16, 2009

    really ? wow it takes real brains to know that

  • fishon Dec 16, 2009

    best way to economic growth for all of us is to help those at the bottom to have the opportunity to rise to the top.

    Maybe some of those at the bottom can give these thieves a job.