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The U.S. Crime Surge
The Retail Impact

15 States Enacted Theft Crackdown Laws Over Last 2 Years
Inside new theft crackdown laws rolled out by ten states in 2023 including compulsory education courses for thieves

As a consequence of a rash of smash-and-grab thefts throughout the year, multiple states have introduced new laws to combat the issue.

Ten states have introduced theft-related laws this year; they range from
harsher punishments to implementing task forces to address shoplifting.

The 2023 states that have instituted such laws are
Texas, Virginia, Alabama, Indiana, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Pennsylvania. In the prior year California, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, and North Carolina had instituted similar laws.

Texas has instituted two separate laws, the first being a task force to address the perceived rising theft issue. The second law allows those charged and found guilty of shoplifting to avoid all jail time by enrolling in and completing an educational course.

Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro recently reduced the threshold of merchandise stolen to qualify for a felony retail theft conviction; this also creates
a new felony charge in the state. The bill also created a section of the attorney general's office dedicated to investigating retail theft rings.

These laws have garnered
mixed reactions from the public, lawmakers, and various organizational stakeholders.

Bradley Haywood, a public defender in Arlington, Virginia is still
pushing back against his state's new law that created a new shoplifting felony charge, intending to have them repealed. the-sun.com

Will California's War Against Retail Theft Pay Off in 2024?
What recent California crime trends say about what to expect in 2024

Policy analysts and authorities discuss the factors influencing crime in California over the last two years

While data from the
past few years has shown an increase in violent crime and retail theft, some experts and law enforcement leaders had differing opinions on what may change - or stay the same - in 2024.

California an outlier for violent crime

In 2022, California averaged 499.5 reported violent crimes per 100,000 people, while the U.S. was at 380.7 per 100,000. Although California has mostly matched national violent crime trends since 2014, there has been a widening gap in recent years, which an analysis by the Public Policy Institute of California attributed primarily to a rise in aggravated assault.

Will the root causes of retail theft change in 2024?

Many law enforcement agencies, including the LAPD and the LA County Sheriff's Department, have established
task forces looking to clamp down on retail theft. LASD reported in October that the department's task force had arrested 89 people for retail theft in just five weeks, and recovered $370,000 in stolen goods.

LAPD data found that in the year ending in October,
robbery decreased by 4.2%, and motor-vehicle theft decreased by 4.5%. In 2022, according to the Protective League, California saw a 28.7% jump in retail crime.

There are positive trends. Larceny theft has remained relatively flat compared to 2013, from 252,997 to 250,794. Shoplifting and purse-snatching has been nearly cut in half.

Police departments say they remain focused despite challenges

Changes in this year's trends are very possible. The California Highway Patrol has received several hundred million dollars to bolster retail-crime prevention, and the agency has arrested more than 1,000 people. Some trends, like a decrease in young people committing violent crime, have given researchers hope.  dailynews.com

Increased Security & Riot Glass Isn't Stopping Smash & Grabs in Chicago
Chicago shop owners targeted by smash-and-grab burglars want solutions
Kim is one of several small business owners in the city who have been hit by multiple smash-and-grab burglaries involving cars in a short time span,
despite increased physical security such as shutters and riot glass for windows. The tactic involves a crew of thieves driving a vehicle through storefronts and stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise before fleeing in cars.

Also called "crash-and-grabs," after they occur store owners quickly pick up the pieces, reinstall security and reopen - usually within a week - to serve customers. While owners say they are committed to their bricks-and-mortar stores,
the lack of arrests and the relentless burglaries have them wondering how they can keep their businesses afloat.

"We want to keep growing and be more of a staple in the community, but
if this keeps happening over and over again, what are we supposed to do?" Kim said on a recent afternoon in SVRN.

Rob Karr, president and CEO of the Illinois Merchants Retail Association, said the radius of smash-and-grabs has been expanding beyond downtown.
Thieves are also becoming more savvy and organized with crime, leading even businesses with strong security to face burglaries.

"It's getting spread out, and we've seen a heightened awareness," Karr said. "We also know that
thieves are taking down barriers now."

Karr said tracking
smash-and-grab burglaries is an issue across Illinois and nationally because each jurisdiction records the crimes differently. He called on law enforcement to find solutions for the repeated thefts. "They really need the full engagement of law enforcement to take this seriously," Karr said. "There's no end in sight for this theft but it's leaving the retailer completely exposed simply because prosecution doesn't occur." gmtoday.com

Target's 'Relentless' Effort to Take Down Shoplifters
Stealing from Target: Consequences, Loss Prevention, and the Impact on Community
Shoplifting is a serious offense that can have severe consequences, and
one store that takes it very seriously is Target. This popular retail chain has gained a reputation for building strong cases against repeat shoplifters and ensuring that they face the appropriate legal consequences. Target employs various loss prevention strategies, such as security guards, surveillance cameras, and entrance theft detection devices, to deter potential shoplifters and safeguard their inventory.

If you are caught stealing from Target,
you could be charged with either petit larceny or grand larceny, depending on the value of the stolen items. Target is relentless in its efforts to combat shoplifting within its stores and actively works towards bringing those responsible to justice. The company's dedication to preventing theft is evident in its staggering inventory loss figures; during the last fiscal year alone, Target experienced a whopping $763 million in shrink, which encompasses losses due to shoplifting, fraud, or cargo theft.

One concerning trend that retailers like
Target are facing is organized retail crime. These networks operate with sophistication and target every point along the supply chain - from docks and trucks to railways and even within stores themselves. This rise in criminal activity poses serious challenges for retailers who strive to protect their inventory and maintain profitability.

While external factors contribute significantly to inventory loss at Target, internal issues must also be addressed. Employee theft and process failures can account for substantial losses of inventory. To mitigate these risks,
comprehensive employee training programs and strict inventory management protocols must be implemented. beststocks.com

Ignore the Political Noise: Retail Theft is an 'Obvious' Problem
Editorial: Is retail theft a problem? Just ask store security

When it comes to shoplifting and retail theft, the public has every right to be confused.

Is it going up or down? Is it a crime wave, or an urban myth made up by struggling retailers to justify poor sales or shoddy management practices? Are more police needed or fewer? Like everything else,
shoplifting statistics have been politicized to prove one point or another.

The truth is,
retail theft is clearly a problem, and coordinated efforts by businesses, police and prosecutors are paying off.

It's unclear how much money retailers are losing due to organized retail crime.
How many retail crimes go unreported is unknown, but contacting police takes time and insurance claims can drive up business costs.

There is no need to make up concerns about theft. Retailers shutter underperforming stores all the time. Investors typically consider that a good thing if the closures improve the bottom line.

"Millions and millions of dollars in Washington are spent on hiring security, putting in bollards to protect people from driving through the front of their store with a stolen car," said Johnson. "This wasn't the case five years ago. But
these retailers are taking drastic measures, locking up their products, hiring off-duty police and security personnel, armed and unarmed, to protect their customers, to protect their workers and to protect their product."

Is shoplifting and retail theft a legitimate problem? We can ponder that question while waiting for a clerk to open the display case so we can complete our purchase of razor blades or hair care products.

If we leave out the politics, the answer is obvious. seattletimes.com  columbian.com

Social Media is Throwing Gas On the Flash Mob Robbery Fire
Flash Mob Robbery Trend Soared in 2023 Fueled by Social Media

'These people just go out and steal, not because of need, [but] because they can and they won't get in trouble,' a California police officer said of smash-and-grab theft

It's a scene that has played out in retail stores across the U.S. scores of times in 2023:
Hordes of looters running in and out of shops, grabbing everything they can and then scattering before anyone can stop them. Many of the thieves, who can hide in the anonymity of the crowd, never even face consequences for these flash-mob robberies - though the mass robberies sometimes turn violent.

While there isn't specific data on flash mob robberies, industry experts have seen
an uptick of these incidents in 2023 year and predict that the trend will continue in the new year, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), the nation's largest retail trade association.

What drives flash mob robberies?

These types of robberies
often hatch online by young people who put out a call out for others to join in the looting, Drew Neckar, president of Security Advisors Consulting Group, told The Messenger.

"Social media and
a constant cycle of knowing what's happening elsewhere hits TikTok and other platforms, and people may see it and think, 'why aren't we doing that?'" he said.

Committing crime in a group gives the perception that
participants can hide in large numbers and that the chances of being caught afterwards are low because a majority of large retailers are telling staff not to stop mobs of shoplifters for fear of injury or death during these sometimes violent intrusions, Neckar added. themessenger.com

New Bill Seeks to Change Policing in NYC
Families of New Yorkers killed by NYPD plead with Mayor Adams to sign bill requiring cops to log all stops
Eighteen family members of New Yorkers killed by NYPD officers - including the mother of Eric Garner - called on Mayor Adams on Friday to sign
a bill into law that would require city cops to document every investigative encounter they have with civilians.

The so-called
"How Many Stops Act" bill, which passed the City Council earlier this week, has faced opposition from Adams, who says the measure would place an unnecessary bureaucratic burden on officers whose time would be consumed by paperwork instead of policing.

"The How Many Stops Act is not the only change we need, but by shedding light on all stops - including
how often and where they happen and if they are motivated by racial profiling - it will enable us to work together toward eradicating unnecessary and unconstitutional policing and ultimately prevent others families from suffering as we do."

Under current laws,
NYPD officers only need to document civilian stops if it's part of a so-called Level 3 investigative encounter, where there's "reasonable suspicion" of a crime in progress. Under the Council bill, officers would also be required to log all stops for Level 1 and Level 2 encounters, the first of which can be conducted without any suspicion of a crime.

"In every City Council district in this city, our officers will be forced to spend more time in their cars and on their phones, and less time walking the streets and engaging with New Yorkers," the mayor's statement said of the legislation.  nydailynews.com

Dollar General has an answer for Target and Walmart's theft issue

Larceny down almost 80% In Manteca, Calif.



The Pandemic Retail Trend that Will Continue in 2024
Covid Slashed Consumer Choices. This Is Why They Aren't Coming Back.

Companies reduced new items during the pandemic and found that shoppers didn't mind.

Covid slashed consumer choices as
companies pared their offerings to ease clogs in the supply chain. The logistical mess is behind them. But many of the choices aren't coming back. Retailers and suppliers across industries-from groceries to health, beauty and furniture-have said that it didn't pay to offer products for everyone, and consumers didn't care that much when they stopped.

people would rather lose a portion of consumer demand as opposed to spending extra on too much variety," said Inna Kuznetsova, chief executive officer of ToolsGroup, a supply-chain planning and optimization company. Macy's president and CEO-elect, Tony Spring, told analysts in November that "the customer today does not want an endless aisle."

New items made up about 2% of products in stores in 2023 across categories such as beauty, footwear and toys, down from 5% of items in 2019, according to the market-research firm Circana.

Some industry specialists said
the new focus on bestselling items has reduced innovation and hurt smaller brands that rely on retailers' desire to carry something for everyone. wsj.com

Dollar Stores Cash in on Holiday Foot Traffic
Placer.ai: Super Saturday traffic rivals Black Friday numbers
Super Saturday (the last Saturday before Christmas) and Christmas Eve Eve landed on the same day last year, proving to be
nearly as beneficial for retailers, if not more, than Black Friday was.

According to Placer.ai,
clothing retailers, department stores and shopping centers saw visits rival Black Friday traffic, coming in at just 6.6%, 7.2% and 8.7% lower, respectively, on Dec. 23 than they were on the day after Thanksgiving. One category, superstores, saw a large spike in Super Saturday visits at 16.9% higher than Black Friday traffic.

A recent report from Customer Growth Partners estimated $47 billion total in sales on Super Saturday, a sizable increase from the $42.6 billion in sales on Black Friday.
The biggest rise in traffic happened for the discount and dollar chain sector. Super Saturday visits increased 144.3% for the sector, compared to a modest 45.8% YTD increase in traffic on Turkey Wednesday. chainstoreage.com

Costco Facing Union Push
Forget retail theft, Costco faces a potentially bigger problem
As we've seen recently with Starbucks,
management generally does not want its stores to unionize. Adding a union gives workers a unified voice and adds a layer between management and employees. At Costco, which has famously led the way in wages in the big box retail space, pay is apparently not the chief concern of the chain's Norfolk, VA store, which just voted to unionize.

"Costco workers in Norfolk, Va., voted overwhelmingly yesterday to join Teamsters Local 822, marking the union's first organizing victory at the wholesale retailer in two decades. The 238-worker group
seeks strong representation to address years of concerns and improve working conditions," according to a statement from the Teamsters Union.

Organizers cited safety as a major concern, along with having a voice, on-the-job respect, a fair grievance procedure, and respect for seniority as key issues behind seeking union representation," according to an email sent to RetailDive. dcourier.com

Major Winter Storm Could Impact Travel
Season's first major storm could hit this weekend, disrupting travel
Northeast may be in for the season's first winter storm this weekend, and it could be a big one. Meteorologists are watching a storm forming over the Pacific that is slated to make its way across the country and hit the East Coast by Saturday into Sunday, disrupting travel with a potent precipitation mix. Whether that turns out to be rain, snow, ice or all three is still a wild card.

This may well be the
first widespread, significant winter storm of the season, if not in years, for some regions, AccuWeather said Monday. Millions of people along the I-95 corridor could be affected by the snow, ice and rain. It could even end the snow droughts in New York City and Philadelphia.  nydailynews.com

Aldi is America's fastest-growing grocer, with nearly as many stores as Kroger
Aldi now has more than 12,000 stores and is growing rapidly in the US.

Are the Shorter Holiday Return Windows Necessary?

Minimum wage increases go into effect in these 22 states

6 retail brands ready for a comeback in 2024

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Retailers Face Evolving Cyberattacks
Hackers employ nuanced tactics to evade detection

2023 holiday season unveiled alarming realities

The months before the 2023 holidays demonstrated a
change in tactics, techniques, and procedures by adversaries against prominent retailers. Attackers have shown that they are highly sophisticated and have great persistence and depth of planning.

"The 2023 holiday season exposed a chilling reality:
cybercriminals are employing increasingly sophisticated attack methods and meticulously planning months to exploit vulnerabilities," said William Glazier, Director of Threat Research at Cequence.

"This long-term approach
allows them to target unprepared retailers and unsuspecting customers, particularly during peak shopping periods. This shift underscores the urgent need for heightened vigilance and proactive security measures throughout the year," Glazier added.

Many companies, and
retailers in particular, take the holiday season as their cue to focus more on security and begin to lock down their networks and applications. The data suggests that sophisticated attackers began their "attack runs" earlier in the year to lay the groundwork for holiday sales to try and avoid the retailers' security lockdowns as much as possible.

In the second half of 2023 alone,
gift card fraud increased by 110%, while scraping, loyalty card fraud and payment card fraud increased by a collective average of over 700% as attackers lay the groundwork for holiday sale attacks ahead of retailer security crackdowns.

These types of attacks are correlated and spiked together because those
parts of the website, applications, and associated APIs are related, especially as they pertain to attacks. This insight shows that these retailers were not experiencing simple brute force-style attacks in isolation, but sophisticated attacks from adversaries displaying highly varied TTPs.  helpnetsecurity.com

Cybersecurity Professionals in High Demand
Key cybersecurity skills gap statistics you should be aware of
As the sophistication and frequency of cyber threats continue to escalate, the demand for skilled cybersecurity professionals has never been bigger.

AdvertisementThe skills gap is not merely a statistical discrepancy; it represents a substantial vulnerability in the defense mechanisms of businesses and institutions. From the shortage of experts in critical areas such as penetration testing and threat analysis to the broader issues of workforce diversity and continuous skill development, the problems contributing to this gap are diverse and complex.

The cloud skills gap is digital transformation's Achilles' heel

When looking to the future, the IT decision makers were confident that the cloud skills gap within their organization would improve in the coming years, with
87% saying they believe it will get better in the next five years.

Companies rethinking degree requirements for entry-level cybersecurity jobs

Cybersecurity professionals believe that hands-on experience in a cybersecurity role (97%), credentials held (88%), and completion of hands-on cybersecurity training courses (83%) are very or somewhat important when determining if a cybersecurity candidate is qualified.

Cybersecurity pros battle discontent amid skills shortage

71% of organizations report that the cybersecurity skills shortage has impacted them-a dramatic increase from 57% in the last study, leading to an increased workload for the cybersecurity team (61%), unfilled open job requisitions (49%), and high burnout among staff (43%), according to respondents. helpnetsecurity.com

Google Chrome Users Hijacked
Attackers Abuse Google OAuth Endpoint to Hijack User Sessions

Infostealers such as Lumma and Rhadamanthys have integrated the generation of persistent Google cookies through token manipulation.

Attackers have been exploiting an undocumented Google OAuth endpoint to hijack user sessions and allow continuous access to Google services, even after a password reset.

A threat actor called "Prisma" has uncovered the critical exploit, which "
allows the generation of persistent Google cookies through token manipulation, according to a recent blog post by Pavan Karthick M, threat intelligence researcher at CloudSEK.

Prominent infostealers such as Lumma and Rhadamanthys have since integrated the capability in their malware after the threat actor behind Lumma reverse-engineered the script and improved the methodology with advanced blackboxing techniques.  darkreading.com

Major breaches, the government's AI push & UFOs: 2023's biggest stories

Cybercriminals set their sights on crypto markets







Is Amazon Weeding Out Employees with Return to Work Plans?
Amazon eliminated his role. Four months later, he's still getting paychecks.

One senior employee said RTO plans were one tactic Amazon used to weed out employees.

Rather than conducting another round of mass firings that might spook shareholders or push workers out with pricey severance packages, Garrison and another Amazon employee told Business Insider they feel the company is trying to make employees' lives miserable either by enforcing RTO or sticking them in a position that pays less or has a more junior title.

The practice is often known as "quiet firing," in which perks and benefits are stripped, or bosses stop providing attention to certain employees, sometimes overtly showing them the door.

In a Saturday blog post in which he aired the issues he's had with Amazon in the past several months, Garrison had another name for it:
"Silent Sacking." Garrison said since as far back as the summer, there has been a lack of clarity from upper management on the future of his role.

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy announced RTO plans in February, Garrison's team and other groups were told they would not be impacted.

After all, Garrison's
job was always expected to be remote: He started in April 2020 but began interviewing for the role well before the pandemic hit in March of that year.

I was told repeatedly it wouldn't affect me or the teams I worked with. Then in the summer that changed," Garrison wrote on his blog.

Garrison told BI the company went beyond the usual RTO, in which an employee could work at any office, and
enforced "return-to-teams," which required people to be at an office where their team was located. businessinsider.com

Escalating Threats in the E-Commerce Space
E-Tailers Face Ongoing Dilemmas of Friendly Fraud, Insider Crime
As the new year rings in, e-commerce merchants and marketers are
bracing for escalating threats posed by customer dishonesty and insider misconduct.

This trend is exacerbated by the economic downturn, which has tightened cybersecurity budgets,
making the marketplace more vulnerable to attacks, including those from politically motivated, highly skilled nation-state hackers.

In response to worsening fraud scams, which only seem to teach customers more ways to cheat,
merchants are shifting their approach. Instead of demanding the return of disputed items, they're now issuing hassle-free replacements or refunds with no questions asked.

change is largely due to the prohibitive costs and complexities of processing returns, which often outweigh the potential benefits, even when fraud is suspected. Retailers find it more efficient and cost-effective to allow customers to keep disputed items and quickly address their complaints. ecommercetimes.com

FACTlix Uses AI to Identify Fakes in Consumer Reviews, Making Online Shopping Safer for Consumers

Online marketplaces and the future of sustainable ecommerce








Palm Beach, FL: Three people charged with shoplifting from Worth Avenue stores Gucci and The RealReal
Palm Beach police arrested three people they say stole from, and also attempted to steal from, two luxury retailers on Worth Avenue. The three men - a 20-year-old with no address, a 21-year-old from Miami and a 27-year-old from Orlando - face charges of loitering or prowling, resisting an officer without violence and grand theft of more than $750 and less than $5,000, Palm Beach County jail records show. According to an arrest report, a Palm Beach police officer responded just before 1:30 p.m. Dec. 23 to the Gucci store on Worth Avenue for a report of attempted shoplifting. The three men were found on Golfview Road as they tried to leave the island. Two were in an Uber, police said, while the third man was found later hiding in the bushes near a home on the street. The men in the Uber had with them a Louis Vuitton shirt worth $795, a blue Casablanca silk shirt worth $445, a pair of Nahmias silk shorts work $250 and a Gucci silk shirt worth $675, the arrest report said. Each item had a store tag from The RealReal on Worth Avenue, and anti-shoplifting devices were still attached to the pieces of clothing, police said. Officers checked with a loss-prevention employee at The RealReal, who confirmed that the items found with the men had been taken from that store, the report said.  palmbeachdailynews.com

Greenwood, IN: 3 teens arrested in Greenwood gun store burglary; police searching for 4th suspect
Three teenagers have been taken into custody after a burglary at U.S. Defense Solutions in Greenwood last month. On Tuesday, December 21, 2023, the Johnson County Sheriff's Office responded to 5329 Mount Pleasant North Street after a report of a business burglary. Enforcement deputies immediately called for the assistance of detectives to also respond to the scene. During the investigation, a stolen vehicle was recovered in the neighborhood east of the gun store. It was tracked back to one of the suspects supposedly involved in the burglary. Two juveniles and one adult have been arrested for allegedly participating in the theft. The ages of the juveniles are 15 and 16. The adult arrested is Ivan J. Bautista, 18, of Indianapolis. 

East Lampeter Township, PA: Man sitting in wheelchair, walking out of store not disabled but able to steal
A guy in a wheelchair wouldn't steal, would he? Police near Lancaster, Pa., say they're looking for a "shoplifter impersonator" who went into the Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Outlet "seated in a wheelchair, using his feet to move around the store." Surveillance showed him "selecting numerous clothing items and carrying them on his lap" in the afternoon of Dec. 21. Finally, he stood up, "placed the store merchandise on the seat of the chair, and walked out of the store, pushing the wheelchair in front of him and stealing over $830 of clothing." 

Eden Prairie, MN: Man charged with stealing merchandise valued at $3,473 from Scheels

Allen Park, MI: Numerous shoplifting incidents reported at Allen Park Meijer store

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Shootings & Deaths

Little Rock Police Department ID officer involved in shooting at Baseline Walmart
The Little Rock Police Department has identified the officer who investigators said shot a man in the Baseline Road Walmart on New Year's Eve. Officials said Officer Kreshun King Sr. was off-duty from the department and working at Walmart at 8:15 p.m. when the shooting took place.
King was called to assist store security in detaining a man suspected of shoplifting, officials said. Officials said the shoplifting suspect, 30-year-old Benjamin McDaniel, struggled and then pulled out a knife, cutting King's hand. King then stepped back and drew his gun while repeatedly shouting for McDaniel to drop the knife, according to investigators. Officials said McDaniel did not drop the knife and instead moved toward King, at which point King then shot McDaniel. Investigators said an ambulance was called for immediately and King and McDaniel both were taken to UAMS. King was treated and released, but McDaniel died from his injuries. LRPD officials said there is an ongoing investigation into the shoplifting, as well as a second investigation underway into King's discharging of his service weapon. King is on administrative leave per department protocols.  kark.com

Tuscaloosa, AL: Man shot in Academy Sports parking lot
Police in Tuscaloosa have arrested a 23-year-old man after he allegedly shot another man several times outside a sporting goods store on New Year's Eve. Jack Kennedy, the commander of the multi-agency Tuscaloosa Violent Crimes Unit, said officers were called to Academy Sports on Skyland Boulevard just before 7 p.m. Sunday. The victim, an adult man, had been shot several times but drove himself to the hospital for treatment of wounds Kennedy said were not life-threatening. The suspect had left the scene by the time police arrived, but Kennedy said witness statements and video and physical evidence led investigators to 23-year-old Kajairames Conner. Kennedy said the VCU obtained an arrest warrant and located Conner Tuesday. He was taken into custody and charged with attempted murder, then booked in the Tuscaloosa County Jail, where he remained Tuesday afternoon with no bond.  tuscaloosathread.com

Charlotte, NC: Shooting at convenience store leaves one injured
A man is in the hospital recovering after being shot by a suspect who fled the scene at a convenience store in north Charlotte on New Year's Day, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police said. Officers responded to calls around 11 a.m. Monday on New Year's Day at a convenience store on Beatties Ford Road in north Charlotte. A 43-year-old man was found in the parking lot suffering from gunshot wounds and was transported to an area medical center with serious injuries. The suspect is unknown at this time and used a handgun in the attack, according to the police report. The suspect is facing aggravated assault charges. This remains an active investigation.  qcnews.com

Ocala, FL: Store owners facing big bills after SWAT cuts holes through gates looking for Ocala mall shooter
The man who killed someone and shot a woman in the leg at the Paddock Mall in Ocala on December 23 is still on the run. The reward for information leading to his arrest could earn you $15,000. However, that isn't the only thing the police might be shelling out money for. SWAT officers cut holes through the gates of stores in the mall, and the store owners aren't happy about the bills they're facing for repairs.  fox35orlando.com

Virginia Beach, VA: Police seeking suspect in shooting outside 7-Eleven
Officers say that they responded to a call reporting a gunshot wound victim shortly after 9am on Saturday at the 200 Aragona Blvd 7-Eleven.

Robberies, Incidents & Thefts

Compton, CA: Street takeover in Compton leads to wild break-in at Mexican Bakery
A street takeover led to a wild break-in at a Mexican bakery in Compton in which a large mob of looters ransacked the store, leaving the business in total disarray. It happened around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday at Ruben's Bakery & Mexican Food near the intersection of El Segundo Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue. According to the Compton Sheriff's Station, there was a street takeover in the area with about 100 people. Some of them were reportedly burning debris and trash in the street. Video obtained by Eyewitness News shows a group of what appears to be young men and women raiding the store, jumping on counters, stealing food and taking cash registers. Investigators said the group used a white Kia Soul to crash into the building. Footage shows the driver backing up and ramming into the store multiple times as people made their way in.  abc7.com

Ottumwa, IA: Man Who Spent Night inside Menard's Charged With Burglary
A man is charged with burglary after reportedly spending the night inside a closed business last week. According to court documents, on December 27 at approximately 7:57pm, 35-year-old Kelby Jaron Klicker entered the Menard's store in Ottumwa and went directly to the restroom. The store closed shortly after at 8:00pm. All employees left the store by 8:36pm. At approximately 2:54am, Klicker exited the restroom and went to an aisle and took a buck knife before going to the family restroom. When employees arrived the following morning, they noted that the family restroom was locked. Klicker, according to the report, exited the family restroom at approximately 6:42am and was directed by an employee to leave the store a few minutes later. Klicker was later arrested and charged with burglary 3rd degree, a Class D Felony. He currently remains in the Wapello County Jail.  ottumwapost.com

Jacksonville, FL: Organization says $45K worth of Legos meant for sick kids were stolen
A Florida organization that provides resources to families going through cancer says thieves broke into its warehouse and stole $45,000 worth of Legos. The Legos are collected and given to children undergoing cancer treatments. In 2023, V for Victory said it had already provided approximately 2,000 Lego sets to children prior to the burglary. "It's a great program for the kids because it takes something that is all negative for most children, which is getting chemo or getting a spinal or getting anything like that," Paul Scott, who founded the organization, told Jacksonville TV station WJXT. "It takes something that's 100% negative, and it makes it a positive."  news4jax.com

Sac City, IA: California couple arrested for cashing in stolen lottery tickets



Auto - Milford, CT - Burglary
C-Store - Fort Dodge, IA - Burglary
C-Store - Rome, GA - Burglary
C-Store - Carson City, NV - Robbery
C-Store - Crofton, MD - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Spokane, WA - Robbery
C-Store - Portsmouth, VA - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Edgewood, MD - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Palm Springs, FL - Armed Robbery
C-Store - Ohkay, NM - Armed Robbery
Clothing - Palm Beach, FL - Robbery
Dollar - Detroit, MI - Armed Robbery
Dollar - Mobile, AL - Robbery
Gas Station - Oahu, HI - Burglary
Gas Station - Ross Township, OH - Robbery
Gaming - Sioux Falls, SD - Robbery
Gas Station - Manchester, CT - Robbery
Guns - Greenwood, IN - Burglary
Handbag - Nashville, TN - Robbery
Hardware - Ottumwa, IA - Burglary
Hardware - Rapid City, SD - Burglary
Marijuana - King County , WA - Burglary / 2nd in 2 wks
Medical - Spartanburg County, SC - Burglary
Restaurant - Compton, CA - Robbery
Walmart - Little Rock, AR - Armed Robbery / Sups killed
Walgreens - Enosburg Falls, VT - Robbery / 2nd x in wk                     


Daily Totals:
• 17 robberies
• 9 burglaries
• 1 shooting
• 1 killed

Click map to enlarge




None to report.

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