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These statistics are the result of years of research with
thousands of shoplifting offenders and are the property of
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More than $13
billion worth of goods are stolen from retailers each
year. That's more than $35 million per day.
There are approximately
27 million shoplifters (or 1 in 11 people) in our nation
today. More than 10 million people have been caught shoplifting
in the last five years.
affects more than the offender. It overburdens the police
and the courts, adds to a store's security expenses, costs
consumers more for goods, costs communities lost dollars
in sales taxes and hurts children and families.
steal from all types of stores including department stores,
specialty shops, supermarkets, drug stores, discounters,
music stores, convenience stores and thrift shops.
There is no
profile of a typical shoplifter. Men and women shoplift
about equally as often.
25 percent of shoplifters are kids, 75 percent are adults.
55 percent of adult shoplifters say they started shoplifting
in their teens.
buy and steal merchandise in the same visit. Shoplifters
commonly steal from $2 to $200 per incident depending
upon the type of store and item(s) chosen.
is often not a premeditated crime. 73 percent of adult
and 72 percent of juvenile shoplifters don't plan to steal
89 percent of
kids say they know other kids who shoplift. 66 percent
say they hang out with those kids.
say they are caught an average of only once in every 48
times they steal. They are turned over to the police 50
percent of the time.
3 percent of shoplifters are "professionals"
who steal solely for resale or profit as a business. These
include drug addicts who steal to feed their habit, hardened
professionals who steal as a life-style and international
shoplifting gangs who steal for profit as a business.
"Professional" shoplifters are responsible for
10 percent of the total dollar losses.
The vast majority
of shoplifters are "non-professionals" who steal,
not out of criminal intent, financial need or greed but
as a response to social and personal pressures in their
generated from "getting away with it" produces
a chemical reaction resulting in what shoplifters describe
as an incredible "rush" or "high"
feeling. Many shoplifters will tell you that this high
is their "true reward," rather than the merchandise
who have become addicted to shoplifting, describe shoplifting
as equally addicting as drugs.
57 percent of
adults and 33 percent of juveniles say it is hard for
them to stop shoplifting even after getting caught.
shoplifters don't commit other types of crimes. They'll
never steal an ashtray from your house and will return
to you a $20 bill you may have dropped. Their criminal
activity is restricted to shoplifting and therefore, any
rehabilitation program should be "offense-specific"
for this crime.
steal an average of 1.6 times per week.
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