I’ve been dealing with this one petty shoplifter for over a month now. It turns out he is well known in our town, and he has been banned from almost every other store. When I called the police about him, we went into the office and I showed the officer the video of the theft. He knew the guy’s name, where he lived, and everything about him. We have an extensive electronic article surveillance system, and all the tools to go with it, so it was perplexing that we could not catch this one guy.
He would come into the store carrying a large back pack. He would always tell the cashier he was just going to leave his back pack up front while he went to the restroom. The cashier would tell him that was fine, and he would go to the rear aisles of the store, where the health and beauty products are displayed. What the cashier didn’t ever seem to notice was that he never once actually went to the restroom. He always wore cargo pants though, and he would first go to the trial size section. Then he would go to our fragrance impressions display, steal several of them, and leave the empty packages behind. He would fill his pants pockets with all the stuff, grab his bag from beside the checkout, and walk right out the door. He was stealing about $50 worth of merchandise from us every time, so it was definitely adding up.
We knew we had to brainstorm to figure out how to successfully catch this guy and get him to stop shoplifting. We first looked at all the times he had been in and made up a list of his most targeted items. We thought he was possibly homeless because he always stole trial size toothpastes and deodorants. And we also thought he may be stealing the fragrance bottles in order to sell them, and they were the majority of the problem anyway, because of their high retail. We had to make them undesirable and unsellable for him. First we added Checkpoint Labels to the packages. We used them to seal the boxes shut and make them harder to open. Since he was opening the boxes though and leaving them behind, we also had to think of a way to use our electronic article surveillance tools to stop that as well. So we also have some different Checkpoint Labels that have our store name and address printed on them. They work the same as the classic versions, but they are more useful in identifying where the stolen items came from. That helps the police get your merchandise back to your store, and back on your shelves. It’s great to get an arrest and make a recovery, and when your store information is printed on the labels, it makes the return much easier and faster.
So with our combined efforts and more awareness form our cashiers, we were able to finally catch him yesterday. My cashier actually missed seeing him come in but saw him go out. She quickly called me to the front, and I called the police immediately. One officer came, and another went looking for the suspect. They arrested him on the prior warrant I had taken out on him, and while they worked on that, I took out a new one for the latest larceny. I had the list of items I suspected him of taking and I told the officer to look on the bottoms of the bottles for my specific Checkpoint Labels. And guess what?? They were there just like I said. I got my stuff back right there at the courthouse and brought it back with me. And as for my thief… he spent last night in jail.
For more information about Checkpoint Labels, contact us or call 1.770.426.0547.