In San Francisco, California, there is a new “normal”: witnessing shoplifting in broad daylight and no one can do anything about it.
A new video is circulating on social media showing a group of women running out of a CVS pharmacy with bags full of stolen items. While this was happening, store employees just shrugged their shoulders when asked if they would call the police.
The incident was recorded by reporter Henry K. Lee. A witness, Steve Adams, told Lee that the four women were “emptying the place” and that when he asked store employees if they would call the police, “they just shrugged their shoulders.”
Retail thefts are now a daily occurrence in the city and some stores were forced to close their doors or limit hours of operation.
Multiple incidents in California have been caught on camera, including a viral video from earlier this month showing a group of thieves leaving the designer store Neiman Marcus.
Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, another video that began circulating last week shows two men in the suburb of Granda Hills walking out of a TJ Maxx store with armfuls of items.
Authorities and retail officials in San Francisco said these groups of shoplifters regularly take merchandise for resale. Moreover, shoplifters are not stealing “one or two items that someone might need to survive,” San Francisco Police Department spokesman Robert Rueca told Fox News.
For her part, Asha Safaí, a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, commented on her social networks that there is a vast retail theft network in the city that supplies organized crime with medicines and accessories, and even sells stolen products on the city’s sidewalks, often next to the stores that are victims of the thieves.
“Millions of dollars worth of merchandise has been stolen from retailers in San Francisco,” California Retailers Association (CRA) president Rachel Michelin told Fox News, adding that the funds from the stolen goods are ultimately “used by criminals.”
License to steal in California
Citizens in San Francisco denounce that, in broad daylight and without fear, people rob drugstores, clothing stores and supermarkets without being arrested. The reason is that in that city a change in the criminal law was approved which reduced “non-violent robberies” to the category of “misdemeanors.” Proposition 47 establishes that thefts in San Francisco for products under $950 will not be penalized.
A report in The Epoch Times notes that “law enforcement reports that many thieves now calculate taking enough to stay below the $950 Proposition 47 threshold.”
“They can repeat the same theft up to the same $950 threshold as many times as they wish without it becoming a felony. The thefts are not cumulative,” the news outlet reads.