Have you seen someone shoplift? Did you tell?

I'm guessing this counts as a "shopping experience" so I hope this is in the right place :P

I was in BCBG today browsing through the sale rack, when a women came in with a HUGE paper shopping bag (already full) and stood on the other side of the rack. I saw her start to grab things from the rack and dump them in her bag, so I quickly walked over to the sales associates and told them someone was shoplifting. Apparently they were all distracted because she had an accomplice come in and ask about buying GCs. They caught her, and I was hiding behind the long dresses in the back of the store because I was afraid they would see me!

So I was wondering-have you ever seen someone shoplift, and did you alert someone? Why or why not?

For me, I would always tell-I worked in retail and I remember how frustrating it was when things got snatched.
 
Jul 18, 2008
2,164
0
New York City
I have once but it was in Abercrombie not a huge deal but still... I did tell somebody who worked there because I've gone into debt, worked hard to get out of it and spent sooo much money to get what I want and it makes me mad to know that people will just get it for free.
 

unluckystars

Member
Dec 11, 2008
4,362
123
philly
I work retail and I hate thieves.. so yes definitely I will alert someone. There's just as much a chance they will steal from you if given chance.
 

Irishgal

I run with scissors
O.G.
Apr 22, 2006
15,382
2,789
Long and Low Farms
Yes. About 3 years ago I was at Burberry at South Coast Plaza. There was a guy, about 28 standing in the corner with an older woman, about 65, and they were stuffing trench coats into their pants.
I went over to a SA and pointed and said "those people are stealing right now". To which the SA replied "we are not allowed to do anything other than alert the police". Th thieves strolled out with the goods.
 
Sep 30, 2008
2,340
8
Boulder, Colorado
Yes. About 3 years ago I was at Burberry at South Coast Plaza. There was a guy, about 28 standing in the corner with an older woman, about 65, and they were stuffing trench coats into their pants.
I went over to a SA and pointed and said "those people are stealing right now". To which the SA replied "we are not allowed to do anything other than alert the police". Th thieves strolled out with the goods.
that is so weird. at our mall they can ask you to open your bag and if you obvously have something you didnt pay for in there they can hold you untill the police come. lol i know this becuse iv seen it happen and i have several friends who work at the mall.
 

unluckystars

Member
Dec 11, 2008
4,362
123
philly
it depends on the store and their corporate policy. Due to lawsuit fears a lot of stores are not allowed to do anything unless they SEE them take something. Or some stores can only ask to look in the peoples bags if the alarm goes off and the people don't have to say yes! If the store has their own security( most bigger stores have undercovers you'll never know are even behind you) they usually can do more.
 

missbanff

Done here
O.G.
May 19, 2007
10,019
10
I worked retail for many years, so I know when people or up to no good.

Once I was in a store and I saw a bunch of people acting weird and knew what they were up to. I just told the salesperson, "You may want to keep an eye on those folks over there.....". I, too, used to HATE when things got snatched. I figured, I alerted them, what they do with that info is up to them.
 

Gimmethebag

Gimme Gimme Gimme
O.G.
Dec 2, 2008
3,192
1,335
Chicago
You would be shocked by the amount of theft and who is doing it.

I've caught everyone from a wealthy petite blonde woman stuffing pieces in her Goyard to teens to a ring of old ladies to hoodlums that used their baggy clothing. Some stores have the policy to never confront them out of the fear of a lawsuit, but my current company DOES prosecute. And the two times we've called the police, the suspects were convicted of a felony- grand theft.

Most people don't think about it. I try to let other posters know not to take it personally if you get followed in a store... Usually, it's because you are carrying a large tote bag, draping items over your arm or wearing a coat. I always watch women with strollers, because I've caught women stuffing expensive tops and cashmere in strollers before.
 
Mar 14, 2006
5,519
851
the lowcountry
one time when I was a teenager I was at the mall with a good friend and a friend of hers that I was just meeting.

we went to Bebe to look at dresses. shortly after we left, I found out that the new girl had tried on a dress, then put her regular clothes on on top of the dress and walked out of the store with it.

I was in total shock and felt badly about it for years afterward. but being a teenager who just wanted to be friends with those girls, I did nothing.
 

stephc005

O.G.
Aug 7, 2008
8,581
1,622
MD
i've never seen anyone shoplift, but i would certainly let an employee know. stealing is wrong no matter who you are or what you steal. my sister works at AE, and she sees people stealing from there and the stores across from AE. it's not unusual to see the mall security escorting people out, checking their bags, or handcuffing them. even though AE is pretty inexpensive, people still steal from there and pretty obviously too from what i've been told.
 

digby723

Back to reality
May 2, 2006
5,139
3
NOVA
I've worked in stores where I've seen tons of people stealing...and to the poster that asked about the black domes, yes they do work :smile:

When I worked in electronics, there would be people that would come in with huge bags and try to stuff them with video games...we had a policy that we couldn't look into anyones bags, touch them or search them, but we could block them from leaving the door and call the police and escort them to a private room and ask them questions ourselves. Theivery totally sucks, and if ever saw anyone suspicious I would totally speak up to an employee. I've never seen anyone steal outside of my work, but when I'm out and about, I'm pretty much in my own little world and pretty oblivious lol.
 
Yes. About 3 years ago I was at Burberry at South Coast Plaza. There was a guy, about 28 standing in the corner with an older woman, about 65, and they were stuffing trench coats into their pants.
I went over to a SA and pointed and said "those people are stealing right now". To which the SA replied "we are not allowed to do anything other than alert the police". Th thieves strolled out with the goods.
I can't believe that! I was in a mall, so none of the stores (except Aritzia) have their own private security-and the mall security always take forever to arrive. When I worked at that mall, they told us we're allowed to ask to look inside people's bags, but we're not supposed to chase them (you don't know if they have a weapon or something) although I worked next to Bebe and saw a friend of mine chase after a shoplifter with one of his coworkers. Unfortunately, if you DO get the items back, you can't hold the person hostage inside the store until the security comes. So although BCBG got their items back, the woman bolted before security could apprehend her.

I can understand why so many people shoplift-the rules almost work in their favor! It's unfortunate store clerks can't do more to prevent it.
 
Jul 17, 2008
4,637
48
I was at the supermarket a few weeks ago, and I saw a woman put a pound of roast beef in her pocketbook. She had a shopping basket on her arm, she could have easily put the meat in that. She was dressed well, in a bohemian kind of style. I noticed her because she was making a big deal about the amount of meat they were giving her. She kept having them add to the package. She must have seen me see her, but she acted oblivious.
I told the manager. It was kind of a surreal experience - like you don't believe it is happening.