The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has responded to new figures from the Office for National Statistics’ annual Crime Survey for England and Wales, reiterating calls on retailers to report incidents of shop theft when they occur.
According to the ONS survey, which covers the whole of retail, the number of police recorded shop theft incidents for the year ending December 2018 decreased by 3% to 374,895 offences.
ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “The ONS figures may show a decrease in the overall number of shop thefts being recorded by the police, but we know that there is significant under reporting of incidents like theft due to frustration from retailers about the lack of response from police.
“We urge retailers to report all incidents of shop theft when they occur. According to our members completing our crime survey, four in five shop thieves are repeat offenders, and half are motivated by needing to feed a drug or alcohol addiction, so failing to report shop theft allows these problems to develop unchecked, which could lead to more shop theft and progression to crimes like robberies or burglaries.”