The following trends in retail crime have been witnessed by Brisbane retailers over the past few weeks, as relayed across the National Retail Association SafeCity Network.

Thank you to all of the retailers reporting these crimes and trends.
The more we all report, the more we all know.

Products being targeted

  • Gaming controllers & accessories
  • Video games
  • Rexona cans
  • Incense
  • Porcelain statues
  • Tommy Hilfiger sunglasses
  • Ray Ban sunglasses
  • Leather bags
  • Alcohol spirits
  • Sterling silver jewellery
  • Body piercings
  • Lacoste polo shirts
  • Women’s shirts
  • Chessex dice
  • Knife blocks
  • Fragrances
  • Beauty products
  • Gourmet meat
  • Pokémon cards
  • Magazines
  • Greetings cards

Criminal Behaviour

Theft:

  • Reports of individuals waiting for staff to be busy serving other customers, before shoplifting items, are increasing. Retailers often report seeing individuals acting suspiciously and discovering empty boxes or missing goods after their departure from the store. One retailer reported checking on a customer to find a young male was no longer there nor was a leather bag valued at $140.
  • An optometrist reported being repeatedly targeted by young males stealing designer sunglasses on display. The manager reviewed CCTV footage and discovered the individuals never try the glasses on. They hold them and wait for the assistant to be busy before hiding the sunglasses on their persons.
  • A fashion store has reported two repeat offenders de-tagging products. A polite middle-aged woman often engages with staff then uses pliers to de-tag items when staff are busy. Staff have also found magnets in store on multiple occasions after a suspicious young female was present.
  • A grocery store reported having a major issue with youths stealing Rexona deodorant cans for chroming purposes. This is an ongoing problem – read our chroming crime alert HERE or our website HERE.
  • A staff member reported noticing a woman acting suspiciously before offering her a basket as a deterrent for shoplifting. The individual then filled the basket and brazenly walked out without paying.

Group Offending:

  • Two males have recently targeted a gaming store. One male distracted the staff member by enquiring about a gaming console whilst the other stole controllers, gaming accessories and even managed to get behind the counter to access the high-end games. The pair stole over $1,000 worth of products.
  • A menswear store reported two young females picking up two Lacoste polo shirts and walking towards the exit. A staff member intercepted them but they continued towards the exit laughing and saying “you can’t touch us.” After reviewing CCTV footage, staff believe the females were encouraged to do so by their mothers outside.

Snatch and Grabs:

  • Two liquor stores reported having ongoing issues with individuals snatching and running. The individuals wait for staff to be serving another customer or away from the counter before rushing in, grabbing bottles of spirits and running away.
  • A kitchenware retail assistant reported multiple incidents of individual’s brazenly stealing knife blocks on display at the front of the store.

Aggressive and Anti-Social Behaviour

  • A mother has left her child aged between 5 and 8 years in a newsagency. The retail assistant asked the child where their parent was to which they responded, “doing the grocery shopping.” The assistant advised the child that they should not be in a store without a parent present. The mother returned shortly after and verbally abused the staff using profanities and racial slurs.
  • A discount store reported a group of teenagers acting disruptively. In an attempt to steal items, one of the individuals pushed over a card stand to prevent the staff member approaching the group.
  • A retail assistant reported feeling unsafe while a suspicious male was pacing out the front of the store for 10 minutes.
  • A retail assistant has had racial slurs directed at her because she was unable to meet the customer’s request.
  • A liquor store is fed up with the amount of youth individuals who attempt to buy alcohol. When declined the individuals get verbally abusive.
  • Retailers are noticing an increase in aggression with the festive season approaching.

General Feedback

  • Some retailers have noted that their proximity to a public transport station increases the presence of anti-social individuals in the centre.
  • A pharmacist has linked the amount of theft they encounter with their proximity to the exit and entrance of their centre.

 

About the SafeCity Network

The National Retail Association’s SafeCity Network brings together retailers, government and law enforcement to better inform and equip retailers to reduce retail crime.

On 1 March 2018, the NRA launched the SafeCity Network as a trial in Brisbane aimed at increasing collaboration and insight between retailers to reduce retail crime. By reducing crime over the long term, the program aims to attract more shoppers and visitors, and ultimately create a more vibrant, safer retail precincts.

Participants in the SafeCity Network gain access to regular crime alerts and bulletins based on real-world intelligence shared by other retailers.

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