A shop has decided to start posting CCTV footage on social media of people who shoplift in their store to deter people from stealing.
Touts, in Cleeve, North Somerset, took to Facebook earlier this month to make the announcement after feeling they were left without “any other choice”. They said staff had been dealing with “huge levels of theft and aggression” and felt unsafe at work.
They are now urging people to help them identify the individuals in the CCTV.
Explaining the move, the company explained in a Facebook post, “Our team are continually being threatened, intimidated and ultimately feel unsafe in a workplace that we try so hard to create a positive environment for.”
“We didn’t want it to have to come to posting this on social media but we don’t feel we have any other choice. Our teams are working so hard each day and shouldn’t have to deal with the huge levels of theft and aggression we are experiencing, so we feel we need to make a stand,” stated the Facebook post, adding that up until now, the store tried to deal with shoplifters through other means, however, from now on, any theft will be made public on its Facebook page to help us identify the person.
CEO John Tout said, “A lot of our team members, even some of the younger ones and the women, they’ve been threatened. They’ve been told that when leave the store at night they’re gonna be harmed. My pregnant wife has been threatened and to be honest, it’s reached a level which I don’t think any society should ever get to,” he added.
“People shouldn’t feel like they allowed to go round and do these sorts of things,” BBC quoted Tout as saying.
In a statement, Avon and Somerset police said, “Shop staff should be able to feel safe in their workplace and we don’t underestimate the impact of these types of crime.
“Our neighbourhood teams are committed to working with individual businesses and business groups to support them and have successfully used anti-social behaviour legislation to ban persistent thieves from certain areas.
“We encourage shop workers to report crime and aim to respond to incidents of shoplifting proportionately, prioritising those in which threats are made, acts of violence are reported or a suspect has been detained,” BBC quoted the police as saying.
They added that officers were having to prioritise cases based on the level of ongoing threat, dealing with an average of 245 calls per day over the last five days in North Somerset alone.
“We’re thinking if we give them the best CCTV in the country, which I think we’ve got, along with helping identifying who these people are, hopefully their job will be easier to make sure these people are brought to justice,” Tout said.