LANCASTER – The city of Lancaster will be publicizing the names of businesses that choose not to prosecute shoplifters, Mayor R. Rex Parris announced in a press release Tuesday.
“We will be aggressively going after retailers which are not prosecuting criminals shoplifting goods from their establishments on a daily basis,” said Parris in the news release. “Unfortunately, these retailers have concluded that the total cost of apprehending and prosecuting these criminals currently outweighs the ever-increasing losses they are experiencing. Well, we’re going to change that equation for them rather quickly with this plan.”
Parris spoke about the issue at the last city council meeting on Dec. 11.
He directed the city’s Criminal Justice Commission to determine which city retailers are not prosecuting shoplifters, and return its findings to the city council within 90 days.
“I want to put their names right out there. I want to publicize the fact that they’re actually allowing these crimes to occur,” added Parris.
The 90-day period is intended to give retailers ample time to modify, as necessary, their policies regarding prosecution of shoplifters, Parris said.
“We know that crime is contagious, and the only sure way to stop it is ‘certainty of apprehension’. Right now, these retailers are providing these criminals with a ‘certainty of not being apprehended,’” Parris said. “That’s why I’ve introducing this plan. I want these retailers to fully understand that they can be part of the solution, rather than the problem.”