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Shoplifting surge hits retailers hard and shoplifters harder

On Behalf of | Oct 12, 2021 | Firm News

When you stop by a drug store, you expect to find the necessities for everyday life. Toothpaste, medicine, toilet paper – the items you need for functioning. Unfortunately, many shoppers are having a hard time coming by these and other items. A wave of shoplifting has hit many retail stores and shows no sign of passing any time soon.

A recent rise in shoplifting

The holiday season tends to bring a sharp uptick in shoplifting. Usually, this occurs from Black Friday – the day after Thanksgiving – through Christmas Day. However, it seems to be coming early this year. Our neighbors in New York City have seen a mass shoplifting spree in stores across the city. Drug stores have been hit particularly hard. Some customers cannot find basic items such as bandages, scissors or hand sanitizer.

New York is not the only area to experience the bump in shoplifting every year. Data suggests that retailers in every state suffer significantly higher losses due to theft during the holidays, and New Jersey is no exception.

Why does theft increase during the holidays?

It is not difficult to speculate on the root causes of this season-wide shoplifting spike. Christmas and other holidays bring enormous pressure to provide top-of-the-line presents for children, relatives and friends. These goods can be prohibitively expensive. No one wants to see their child’s disappointed face when they do not get the gift they wanted. With finances still tight after the pandemic year, it would be only too tempting to line one’s pockets with a few items from the store aisles.

The police will crack down on shoplifters

Just as shoplifters increase their efforts around the holidays, so too do stores increase their loss prevention efforts. This means more staff members monitoring retail facilities es to catch perpetrators. It also means pressing charges against anyone caught stealing. New Jersey law enforcement officers take shoplifting seriously, even if the items stolen are not worth a lot of money. To set an example and discourage other offenders, they do not just give out a slap on the wrist. Anyone charged and convicted could suffer fines, probation or jail time – just in time for the holidays.