An Informed Shoplifting Tutorial

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blackened1339

I deleted myself
#1
I worked in LP for a while, after a successful career of my own. I have seen and used many methods. First off, when you enter a store, look down or to the side so the public view monitor gets a shoddy view of your face. Many stores ONLY have cameras on the doors and the places where cash is exchanged, so if you run into trouble, at least they can't review the tape and identify you if you run into trouble. Unless it's a dire emergency, scope the store for cameras days before you go in to get stuff. Looking for cameras is always a dead giveaway when you are stealing. The mirrored domes are always fake. The larger the size of the dome, the better the chance that the camera is a decoy. The small domes are usually real. Many of the cameras are stationary and don't move.
After you conceal something, it's always a good idea to go into a fitting room or a bathroom. This constitutes losing sight of the merchandise, and most policies prohibit so-called "secret shoppers" from stopping you if you've done this. If you decide to conceal in the fittingroom/bathroom, hide the sensortags, and in various locations. Don't worry about ripping off price/brand tags. Try to get clothing off the hanger on the floor, ditch the hangers, and ball up the intended items under other merchandise. Hopefully, the lazy ass fittingroom clerk won't think to look at every piece you've got.
Don't use the archaic "booster box" method. The Big Gulp cup method is fine for jewelry and other tiny items. The best methods are simple, depending on what you want. If it fits in the palm of your hand, your best bet is to secure it in your hand, let a long sleeve dangle over your hand, and then nonchalantly pocket the item. Large purses are fine for groceries and clothes (roll them up), and the waistband of baggy pants works good for any gender.The key is to never be obvious and to always be cool while you are concealing and walking out. Being obvious includes the aforementioned "camera looks", wearing out of season clothes (coats), backpacks (stash your gear if you have to), and carrying old, worn-out shopping bags or bags from stores that are not in the immediate vicinity. Never walk into a store with an empty shopping bag, and you should at least have one item in your purse or messenger bag. Empty bags are a red flag.
If you are stealing with a friend(s), come in separately. Allow at least 30 seconds between each entry of the store, you never want to come in together and immediately split up. Red flag. A really good thing to do is to pick something out, give it to a friend, and then walk away and have them take it. Do the same for them. If you are not together the entire time, the fact that 2 different ppl are selecting and concealing merchandise normally throws them off due to their policies on stopping people.
There are five things that every store pig in the U.S needs to see before they can detain you:
1. Enter the store
2. Select the merchandise
3. Conceal/rip off tags
4. They can't lose sight of you
5. You have to pass all points of sale and exit the store, making no attempt to pay for the merchandise

If you see someone hanging around the entrance/threshhold, hold back and be leery. You can always put the shit back. If you do get stopped, the best bet is to throw the merchandise at them and run like hell (or you can just run). 9 times out of 10, if they call the cops with a plate number/direction of travel, the cops won't bother coming if they got at least some of the stuff back. Never put your hands on any store employee, even if they touch you first, That elevates the charge to robbery, and the police will respond. Just
get away and run like hell.

BTW, if they page security over the loudspeaker, it's meant as a deterrent and means that no security is in the store.

Hope this helps.
 
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#3
Thanks for the tips!

Q: So, let me just double-check, according to what you know: If LP sees someone put some item(s) in a bag or pocket, then this person is seen to enter a bathroom or dressing room, LP will simply watch this person walk out (unless they are seen to pocket something else after leaving the mentioned private room)? That's almost unbelievable.
How do they explain that policy to you as a LP agent?

Q: Can you mention what store(s) or type of store(s) you worked in LP with?

Great to hear your advice, well-appreciated...
 
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idontfighttheworld

I deleted myself
#4
I've never worked as LP, but I worked at best buy for a few years. One time, I caught a guy opening a cd in bathroom stall, heard the plastic rip and saw the case drop etc. The manager let him go and wouldn't even let LP take his license number because no one actually saw him put the disc in his pocket. From what I was told by the managers, they can stop you if they actually see you put it in your pocket. Losing track of you from then doesn't really matter, unless they find a product ditched. If they lose track and find ditched product, it's assumed you have nothing else. Also, apparently even the cameras don't really matter, they're more for spotting potential shoplifters. Usually if LP suspected someone, they'd get two or more regular workers to follow them around trying to see if they concealed. I imagine it was because the cameras were too grainy to be able to tell what was actually going on, you could only really see general body language. I dunno, it's probably a little different in every store. But if I'm lifting I usually just grab and go. At least in this state, it's illegal for any store employee to touch you. So, if you just don't respond they can't do anything except tell the cops which way you went and what you looked like, if the cops even come at all. I worked at Best Buy for four years and never saw a cop respond to a call.
 
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#5
thanks for your info, idontfighttheworld.
Here's another question for anyone who worked as LP: Ever go to court with video footage? The one time I got caught was a grocery store in Eugene, OR. They mentioned that if I wanted to fight the charge in court, they'd present the store's security-cam videotapes. I don't know what to believe about that. (Incidentally, I got out of the charge somewhere between taking their offer and going to jail.)
 
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#6
Well, you have the right to review all evidence against you before it's presented in court, so if you were charged, you could watch the tape with your PD/lawyer, and see what you thought of the situation after that.
 
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#7
i don't think that lifters have as many ways out in canada when i get caught usally stealing food i just pull the "i'm a dirty little street kid do you expect me to come to court if you charge me" but i learned the hard way that doesn't always work..... almost evey time i've been caught i get grabed & pulled or tackled to the ground. LP's have fucked me up man.
 
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#8
Well, you have the right to review all evidence against you before it's presented in court, so if you were charged, you could watch the tape with your PD/lawyer, and see what you thought of the situation after that.
Yeah, but you only get to see evidence of the case against you if you're going to fight the charge(s) and plead Not Guilty.
And if you decline a deal offered by the prosecution and opt to fight the charge, you may not get the deal offered again (or you may in fact get a better deal), and if the evidence is solid (or, sometimes, even if not) and you lose your fight and get convicted, you'd be kicking yourself - it's not worth risking "trial penalties" just to see if they really had footage, when I know what I did and heard an LP dude recite as much from his notepad to the local patrol cop who took my info and escorted me out of the store.
¿Comprendes, Mendez?
 
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#10
thanks for the inside info but i think you are wrong about one thing. i have read that in arizona concealing merchandise is considered theft.
 
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#11
i always try to buy something cheep or be with someone buying somthing so it looks like were legit and it gets them off your scent plus if you buy somthing u can usualy leave a place even if the alarms go off normaly they will just wave you out and thanks for all the other info
 
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dVEC

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#12
Fuckin' glorious post. I've read a lot of stuff like this, but yours is the best. The bits about cameras are especially informative.

thanks for the inside info but i think you are wrong about one thing. i have read that in arizona concealing merchandise is considered theft.
Yeah there's a couple states with that law, it means they don't need to see the "5 things" mentioned in the first post. Really it's unconstitutional, but it'll probably never get challenged.
 
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blackened1339

I deleted myself
#13
In NY, concealment is considered theft, but only a police officer would ever stop anyone on the basis of concealment alone. If you have merely concealed an item and not left the store, they can't really prove that you didn't intend to purchase the item. If you remove it from the packaging, rip off EAS tags, it shows intent to not pay for the item. If you plead not guilty to a charge, they will most likely bring the video to court, if they have it, to prove their case. However, they have no obligation to show it to you when you're in the store or if you call the store later to ask. A trial would likely be the only circumstance where they would have to provide video. I myself have never had to fight a charge in court, but under such a circumstance, I would have had to be prepared with my reports and the video.
As far as the fitting room/bathroom thing, in the past, many stores would have come after you, but the liability of losing sight of someone in such a circumstance has forced many stores to change their policies on this. Sometimes, certain LPs will be permitted to make such stops, but 90% of the time it has to be a member of LP management, or they have to have approval from a district LP manager. Most stores don't have in house LP management, they usually travel from city to city and are overextended due to budget constraints, although high-density/theft areas are where the management is based out of in most cases, Buffalo being the norm for Upstate NY, for example. To get approval from an LPDM, you would have to be involved in multiple instances of theft in the same area, or perhaps if you were taking a long time carting bagloads out of the store. Of course, these things vary from one jurisdiction to another. I myself worked for a few companies.....The Filene's/Kaufmann's/Robinson-May conglomerate, now defunct, is one, although there were others I worked for. Also, LPs are pretty fond of networking and we always compared policies with people from other stores, so any LP worth their salt usually has a good idea of what goes at other stores in their area.
 
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B

blackened1339

I deleted myself
#14
Oh, btw, I worked in department, discount, and "family" type retailers......usually clothes, jewelry, cologne, accessories, and the like.
 

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#15
lol ive stolen alot from the dallar tree, mostly shitty food, and every time they're like "security to area b" and the workers dont do shit. i allways wondered about that.
 
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#16
dollar tree has always had that tape that runs every hour and says 'security team check cameras' but it's all just deterrant as idontfight stated. most the time when i steal from a place it's more or less a grab and go idea. usually it's cases of beer or jugs of wine so i don't really have pockets big enough to conceal it, i just don't plan on showing up to the store too often. i've been the fallback for some of my friends as well and we would slowly just walk into the workers coming out of the building to follow them and just act like we're entering the store. it gives your buds a good thirty seconds extra, especially if you make it a catastrophic little 'bump' into the pursues. another good idea is if you do ever get charged with anything you can cut your hair and trim up your face (if you're a guy) and put some glasses on when you go to court. i had a friend that did that and they couldn't even recognize it was him. and our other two friends on the camera they thought were girls. haha
 
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#17
Stealing works best if you can front cash and "double up". Here is a variation of the xbox one i mentions in "rei": hit up a store like walmart that carries multiple items and grab a walmart bag. steal a plastic walmart bag and fill it and a cart with the same stuff. ACTUALLY buy the stuff in the cart and watch them bag it (only fill one bag) things like cds, t-shirts, small stuff. Then when you have gone through the cash (and they have de-mangnetized the stuff) switch the bags so you have the "stolen" stuff. then walk out the front, set the alarm off, have you buddy holding the paid for stuff leave the store then and when they see you beeping they will look in your bag, check your receipt see you paid and let you walk (sometimes they put it all through the de-magnetic shit again) off usually detering cameras and personel at the same time. now on the outside you have 2 for 1, just have your alternate return the stuff using the receipt. walmart is great because you return stuff at the customer care and have no chance of seeing the cashier you were helped by
 
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#18
Yes these things are true, yet alot of stores dont always follow the rules, they arent supposed to chase you outside of the parking lot, but Ive gotten chased halfway down the block before, they arent supposed to detain you if they lose sight of you, but that same day I went in the bathroom and when I got out, thats when they fchased me be wary of these things
 

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#19
props to that statement. please dont rely on "store rules" to save your ass. some store employees dont give a shit about the rules. like the bathroom thing, i wouldnt advise it. because what if you go into the bathroom with all this shit and start ripping open packages and hear a knock at your stall door telling you your fucked? no where to run huh! HELLO, JUST BECAUSE THE WORK FOR THE STORE DOESNT MEAN THEY CANT GO INTO THE BATHROOM.
 

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