Addressing the growing issue of retail theft
Roseville, Calif. – This week, the Placer County Board of Supervisors voted to accept a $2 million state grant for the Placer County District Attorney’s Office’s new Retail Theft Vertical Prosecution Program.
Administered by the California Board of State and Community Corrections (“BSCC”), this vertical prosecution program represents the State of California’s effort to address the growing issue of retail theft, which has negative impacts on tax revenue, community safety, and retailers across the state.
Incredible place to live
“Placer County is an incredible place to live, own a business, shop, and recreate,” said Placer County District Attorney Morgan Gire. “This is why our county continues to be the home for large retail hubs like the Roseville Galleria Mall and its anchor stores, the Rocklin Commons Shopping Center, and all the vibrant small business districts in our cities and towns.
“It is critical we ensure the continued safety and economic vitality of our growing business community through proactive approaches to retail theft.”Morgan Gire, Placer County District Attorney
With these grant funds, the Placer County District Attorney’s office will add one full-time Deputy District Attorney, a District Attorney Investigator, and a Crime Analyst to work on the investigation and prosecution of retail theft crimes. The vertical prosecution structure provided by this grant will allow for cases to be handled by the same investigator and prosecutor from case filing through adjudication. Benefits of a vertical prosecution model include improved collaboration and communication with allied agencies, consistent and appropriate sentencing, and the development of critical relationships with investigators and affected community members. The addition of a Crime Analyst will allow the program to employ data driven responses and measure effectiveness.
The grant also provides funds to purchase state-of-the-art technology that will aid in the investigation and prosecution of retail thieves. The Placer County District Attorney’s Office will make this tool available to all local law enforcement agencies making it an asset to the entire Placer region.
Retail theft on rise
Retail theft has presented a chilling effect for communities across California. Reports show brazen attacks on business owners in stores, businesses permanently closing their doors, and a rise in “swarming” or “smash and grab” events. While all communities with robust retail centers have seen a rise in retail theft, Placer County remains aggressive in its approach to hold those who commit retail theft accountable.
Staff assigned to the vertical prosecution model will also continue coordination between local law enforcement, retailers, and regional stakeholders across jurisdictions to ensure effectiveness and collaboration across agencies.
“Collaboration, innovation and success”
“Placer County serves as a model for collaboration, innovation and success when it comes to key issues affecting our community,” said Board Chair and District 3 Supervisor Jim Holmes. “This grant will allow us to create a retail theft initiative that will not only address this issue locally, but hopefully create a program that can be replicated across the state.”
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