When you hear about retail store theft, you might immediately think about shoplifting – generally stealing clothing, food, or other items of relatively small value. But a recent report out of Chandler goes way beyond simple store theft.
Police say that two brothers are now under arrest after being accused of stealing between $100,000 and $200,000 worth of goods from the local Kohl’s store. In case you are not familiar with Kohl’s, it’s a chain of traditional department stores featuring goods such as clothing, shoes, women’s accessories, small electronics, and similar items. If you’re stealing merchandise from the store, it doesn’t add up all that quickly – and even $100,000 worth of clothing, for example, is a lot of “stuff”! So how was the alleged crime accomplished?
One of the brothers, interestingly enough, was a loss prevention officer at the store. He and his brother allegedly worked together to cart out a host of merchandize from the Chandler location, including shoes, clothing, watches and perfume. We’re not quite sure how the $100,000 figure was arrived at, but we’re assuming that it’s tough to hide.
The thefts supposedly took place over a period of several months. It was discovered after a supervisor became suspicious because inventory checks showed large losses. He contacted local police to investigate what he viewed as a case of organized retail theft. Surveillance videos were reviewed, and one of the suspects was seen walking into the store with an empty shopping cart, and leaving with a full one – without stopping to pay for the merchandise. The connection between the brothers was discovered only because the supervisor noticed a strong physical resemblance between the person carrying out the goods and the loss prevention employee.
In any event, we’re pretty sure that the brothers will be charged with more than simple shoplifting. They might expect to be charged, among other things, with theft of property having a value of $25,000 or more. In case you’re wondering, that’s a class 2 felony with a presumptive sentence, absent aggravating or mitigating factors, of five years in prison. In addition, we would be surprised if additional charges were not added, including burglary, conspiracy and others. If convicted, the brothers will likely face a long stretch in prison.
Law Offices of David A. Black
40 North Central Avenue #1400
Phoenix, AZ 85004