A retail crime gang is apparently targeting diapers, detergents and similar items in Puyallup stores. The thefts are costing businesses in the area a lot of money. Three people have been arrested so far, and will likely face criminal charges.
In one case caught by surveillance camera, the group operated by sending in two women who steal different products from the stores. They then look around for those who may be watching them before pushing their shopping carts out of the store. They also have a look-out man who also acts as a driver and a decoy. Recently, two burglaries were reported close to midnight.
A detective with the Puyallup Police Department said that the allegations now involve more violence too. This means those who are caught will also be facing felony charges. The police are speculating that the criminals may be selling the stolen items to smaller grocery stores at throwaway prices and that they may be using the money to buy narcotics. There is a planned meeting of businesses and the Puyallup Police Department to chart ways of dealing with the problem.
In these criminal cases, it is easy to apportion blame to different quarters. It is important, however, for all parties involved to realize that there are legal ways of dealing with such problems. For example, the three people who have been arrested have legal rights that cannot be denied. Before the possibility of conviction, they are deemed innocent and are entitled to representation.
Source: King 5, "Retail crime ring stealing laundry detergent, diapers in Puyallup," Teresa Yuan, Oct. 25, 2012
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