Monday, February 19, 2007
Shoplifting questions
Q: I work in retail and my question is about shoplifting. We had an incident where I work the other night where a customer saw another customer shoplifting. Do we have a right to stop that person or does an associate have to see them? And if we do, do we have to wait until they pass all points of sale to take action?

A: Store employees and managers have certain limited powers of arrest. Store Officials may detain a suspected shoplifter for investigation (a reasonable length of time), whom they have probable cause to believe is attempting to take or has unlawfully taken merchandise. You are by law not required to wait until someone passes all points of sale, but for prosecution purposes, it is typically considered a good procedure to wait, as this eliminates the possibility of the suspect claiming they were putting the item in a pocket while they did other shopping, for example. Once detained by store officials, then the police should be summoned, and store officials need to fill out the St Joseph County Shoplifting Affidavit form to be filled out and given to the investigating officer.

posted by South Bend Police Department @ 12:18 PM  

Welcome to the newly reformatted South Bend Police Department Blog. This blog is an excellent way for us to be more accessible to the public through open communication not typical for law enforcement.

This blog incorporates SBPD related announcements, our popular Ask A Cop feature questions still answered, Twitter updates, and other Crime Prevention related tips you can use.

Take a look at the articles posted on this blog and you’ll find many inform-
ative and interesting topics. We try to cover issues that really affect you such as providing a wide range of safety and crime prevention tips, or explaining some of the mysteries of police work so you have a better understanding of why we do things.

You also get to hear periodically from our guest bloggers such as recruits going through the academies to become officers. “Ask A Cop” is still here, and since 2006 has been very popular with over 360 questions from citizens and our answers posted to date!

Thanks for visiting. If you have any questions or suggestions about the blog, contact us!

About Ask A Cop
The South Bend Police Ask A Cop forum and blog is provided for entertainment purposes only. Content provided is for general information and does not represent an all inclusive answer for every person and every situation.

As such, all content is provided 'as is' and without warranties or guarantees of any kind, either express or implied. Use of this site and reliance on the content is exclusively at the user's risk.

Information provided on or through this site does not constitute legal advice nor legal representation. For these purposes, the user should consult an attorney.

Questions submitted to Ask A Cop are read and reviewed to determine the eligibility of the question for publication.
The South Bend Police Department reserves the right not to answer or post a question, particularly if the content is deemed unacceptable or inappropriate.

  • Submit your Ask A Cop Question Here!
  • The SBPD Blog

    From Twitter:
      follow me on Twitter
      Previous Post