Dozens arrested in Vancouver police shoplifting clampdown
Dozens of thieves, including chronic offenders, were arrested in a shoplifting clampdown in Vancouver’s downtown core over the weekend.
In one brazen incident, a man and a woman stole 47 pairs of pants worth nearly $6,000 from a Robson Street clothing store on Friday.
A staff member called 911 and followed the suspects until police arrived and arrested the pair.
The man, a 44-year-old chronic shoplifter, was already in breach of five court orders for previous thefts, said police. The woman was also in violation of a court order that prohibited her from entering the store.
The weekend clampdown — which started Thursday until Sunday — was a response to a spike in violent thefts in the downtown core in recent years, said Addison.
Between Jan. 1 and Oct. 15, there have been 844 violent shoplifting cases across the city, a 12 per cent increase from the 752 cases during the same time period last year.
Thefts involving weapons such as knives, needles and bear spray have risen more than five-fold since 2019, putting store owners and staff at risk. Commercial robberies have also increased by 126 per cent during the same time period.
In another incident, police arrested a man who had brandished a screwdriver and made off with a box of doughnuts from a 24-hour convenience store downtown Sunday.