A video appeared on social media showing three men collecting clothing items in JD Sports shop in St Albans.
Men are seen collecting clothing items without even trying to hide what they are doing and then leaving the shop despite the staff’s efforts to take the items back.
The shocking footage shows the rise in retail crime in Britain’s shops. This surge in retail crime is connected to “decriminalisation” of shoplifting due to a lack of police action, according to Asda chairman, Lord Stuart Rose, who joined Tesco CEO Ken Murphy in calling for stronger measures to protect supermarket staff from abuse and violence.
British Retail Consortium (BRC) has written to Mayors and Police and Crime Commissioners across the UK to ask them to do more to protect retail workers at the end of July 2023 after new research by the BRC revealed that incidents of theft have increased by 27% across ten of the largest cities in the UK, with some cities up as much as 68%.
BRC stated: “The nature of these crimes has changed, with perpetrators becoming bolder, and many retailers reporting increasing links to organised-crime activity. “
Although policing minister recently said that police should have a zero tolerance approach to shoplifting, and investigate even if the stolen goods are worth less than £200, police don’t have enough resources, according to Police Federation of England and Wales.
“Free for all for thieves”
“Sadly we see similar videos of raids such as this daily. The criminals involved no longer fear being caught,” David McKelvey, former Met Police Detective Chief Inspector and co-founder of My Local Bobby, commented on the video.
“The non-intervention policies of major retailers combined with the lack of support from police, the CPS and the Courts has led to ‘free for all’ for thieves.
“The Government’s change in the law in 2016, making shoplifting a summary only crime has also effectively decriminalised shoplifting under £200,” McKelvey said.
“If there is to be any real deterrent retailers have got to start enforcing the law themselves. They have to allow their staff and security to give evidence and for CCTV to be shared.
“The police will need significant new resources to manage this crisis on our High Streets”.
About My Local Bobby
My Local Bobby is the first ‘private police force’ in the country, patrolling the streets and offering a high visibility deterrent with body cameras to record incidents and offences.
The aim for establishing the company, co-founder David McKelvey states, is “providing a real solution to the current policing crisis, supporting law enforcement to ‘prevent and deter’ offending and to ‘catch and convict’ offenders where the authorities are not able or unwilling.”
Founded in 2016 when police resources and budgets were starting to get stretched, My Local Bobby reflects the soul of its founders who, although retired from the police force, still love the ‘job’.