Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

NYC ‘Rite-Aid’ security guard posts video of brazen shoplifters breeze out of the store with stolen goods as she reveals she has been told not to stop them

  • A viral video shows brazen thieves stealing from a New York city store in front of a security guard before leaving with their stolen items
  • The security guard, a woman named India who said she worked at a Rite Aid, posted the video to TikTok and dubbed it ‘a typical night at work’
  • It showed a parade of people taking things off the shelves and walking out
  • One man even seemed to smile and wave at her as he passed
  • She said she is not allowed to ‘touch, grab or use physical force to stop them’
  • It comes after a summer of rampant shoplifting in San Francisco
  • In the city, charges of property theft less than £950 in value was downgraded from a felony to a misdemeanor in 2014
  • As a result, store staff and security do not peruse or stop thieves who have taken anything worth less than £1,000 

By Melissa Koenig For Dailymail.Com

Published: 22:28, 4 October 2021 | Updated: 22:52, 4 October 2021

A new video shows brazen thieves stealing from a New York City store in front of a security guard before breezing past toward the exit with their stolen goods. 

The video, posted to TikTok by a woman named India who says she works at a Rite Aid store, shows several people taking large boxes off the shelves and walking out without being stopped.

The first two men, one in a gray long-sleeved t-shirt and another sporting a black hoodie, are seen grabbing large boxes of Halloween candy before running out, while the third appears to be a young man that looks directly at her, smiles and waves before he takes off.

A fourth man is seen with a garbage bag full of items slung over his shoulder before he exits the building, and a fifth man is seen carrying an item in his right hand.

India dubbed the video a ‘typical night at work,’ noting in the comments that she is a security guard for the store and takes the videos for her job. It has been viewed over 111,000 times.

The comment led people to ask her why she isn’t stopping the thieves if she is supposed to be a security guard, to which she replied: ‘Because it’s illegal to touch, grab or use any physical force to stop them.’

Instead, she said, her job is to ‘observe and report.’ 

DailyMail.com has reached out to Rite Aid for comment.

A video posted to TikTok shows a parade of people casually shoplifting from what appears to be a Rite Aid in New York City

One man could be seen in the video with a garbage bag full of items slung over his shoulder

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

Another smiled and waved at the security guard who filmed the scene as he passed by

In July, actress Cynthia Nixon criticized her local CVS in Manhattan for putting some of its products under lock and key.

The Sex and The City star tweeted and failed New York gubernatorial candidate tweeted that she had noticed her local CVS in SoHo had ‘started’ locking up ‘basic items like clothing detergent.’

‘As so many families can’t make ends meet right now, I can’t imagine thinking that the way to solve the problem of people stealing basic necessities out of desperation is to prosecute them,’ Nixon tweeted.

But a manager of the SoHo CVS, named Vincent, said she was not living in the real world.

‘Miss Cynthia Nixon, I don’t think you understand what is going on,’ he told DailyMail.com ‘If you feel that way, maybe one day you should come here and see what we go through. Because people are in danger too – they come in here, and start with customers and they start with the people here that work.’ 

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

Cynthia Nixon (pictured) came under fire in July when she slammed a CVS in SoHo for putting its items under lock and key

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

In August, NYC Mayor Bill De Blasio released said crime in August 2021 dropped 5.4 per cent compared to the same time last year. 

Crime in the city is also at one of its lowest levels since 1995, according to CompStat with 6,141 violent incidents compared to 1,979 in the year to date.

Those incidents include, murder, rape, assault, burglary, larceny and grand theft auto.

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

NYPD data shows the change in crime rates from a 28-day period in August 2021 ending on Sunday, September 5, compared to the same time last year

The brazen New York City shoplifting video comes after thieves ran rampant on the West Coast. 

In one incident, surveillance footage caught a group of thieves in masks and hoodies sprinting out of a San Francisco Neiman Marcus with armfuls of designer handbags and others casually walking out of a TJ Maxx store carrying bags worth of goods. 

In another, in June, a prolific shoplifter who had stolen from the same Walgreens on at least four occasions, was seen loading armfuls of Walgreens products into a trash bag, then riding his bike through the store with the stolen goods while the security guard and bystanders looked on. 

The suspect, Jean Lugo-Romero, 40, was arrested on June 19 and remains in jail.

San Francisco’s woke DA Chesa Boudin later spoke out in his defense.

‘When I watch that video, I think about five questions that people are not asking that I think they should,’ Boudin told The New Yorker. ‘Is he drug addicted, mentally ill, desperate? Is he part of a major retail fencing operation? 

‘What’s driving this behavior and is it in any way representative, because it was presented as something symptomatic?’ 

In the city, charges of property theft less than £950 in value was downgraded from a felony to a misdemeanor in 2014 – meaning that store staff and security do not peruse or stop thieves who have taken anything worth less than £1,000.

‘Some people calculate, ‘Hey you know, I don’t want to go over £950, so let me steal £949 worth of property,’ Police Chief William Scott said of the consequences of the law, which was passed as Proposition 47.

He also noted to NBC News that ‘If it’s a felony, our officers can take action. But it it’s a misdemeanor, that arrest has to be a private persons’ arrest, and that makes a difference, because they have to be willing to do that.’

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

The security guard, India, denied that it was only black people shoplifting from the store, posting a follow-up video of a white man grabbing a drink from the refrigerator

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

He then also casually left the store, as she claims she does not have the authority to stop him

There were 12,194 instances in 2021 between January 1 and June 27, 2021, according to the San Francisco police department’s data, representing a drop by around 11 percent from the same time period in 2020, when there were 13,804 instances. The next highest crime is burglary and there were 3,624 instances in 2021, a rough five percent increase from the 3,439 acts committed in 2020 between the same time period.

Defined by the department as including ‘thefts of bicycles, motor vehicle parts and accessories, shoplifting, pocket picking, or the stealing of any property or article that is not taken by force and violence or by fraud.’ Burglary is different from larceny because it involves unlawful trespassing to commit a crime.  

As a result Target announced that six of its San Francisco stores would close at 6pm instead of 10pm in an effort to prevent further theft.

The retailer wrote in a statement, ‘for more than a month, we’ve been experiencing a significant and alarming rise in theft and security incidents at our San Francisco stores.’

Walgreens has closed 17 San Francisco stores, and theft in the pharmaceutical chain’s 53 remaining stores is four times the average for stores elsewhere in the country, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. 

One Walgreens reportedly loses £1,000 a day to shoplifters, the news outlet reported. 

One Target security guard, Kevin Greathouse, told Newsweek that management has instructed him and other employees not to physically engage the shoplifters.

Greathouse said he carries a handgun, a taser and pepper spray on him at all times when at Target. However, he described one alleged shoplifter recently threatening him with a knife and said, ‘I don’t have any intention of getting stabbed for £60 worth of stuff.’

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

The video comes after shoplifting ran rampant in San Francisco over the summer.

A man is seen here fleeing a Neiman Marcus in the city, carrying designer goods with security tags still on them in July

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

Two men were also photographed casually walking out of a TJ Maxx with their arms filled with stolen goods

To combat the rise in crime, Governor Gavin Newsom signed a law in July that reestablishes organized retail theft as a crime.

It applies to those who work with others to receive stolen merchandise either from brick-and-mortar stores or online, with the intent to sell or return the items, those who work with others to receive stolen merchandise, those who steal for others as part of an organized ring or those who do the recruiting for the ring.

But it is still up to local prosecutors to determine what punishments thieves would face – with the progressive district attorney in San Francisco pledging to avoid stiff penalties.

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

The man rode his bike to the store, filled a garbage bag with stolen goods and rode away

Security guard tapes parade of shoplifters in New York City stealing

In a Twitter video posted by ABC7 Reporter Lyanne Melendez, a man is seen nonchalantly shoplifting from a Walgreens in San Francisco as a bystander and security guard watch

Meanwhile, in Seattle, police said in July they made more than 50 arrests linked to coordinated thefts at nine large retailers and grocery stores, NBC reports, and in Albuquerque, ew Mexico the state’s top prosecutor, police and big box stores announced a partnership to combat ‘organized retail crime.’

And in New York City, grand larcenies are up 1.8 percent compared to last year, according to the most recent crime data, with petit larcenies up 1.3 percent.

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